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How does the GPS satellite system work?

How does the GPS satellite system work?

GPS satellites circle the Earth twice a day in a precise orbit. Each satellite transmits a unique signal and orbital parameters that allow GPS devices to decode and compute the precise location of the satellite. GPS receivers use this information and trilateration to calculate a user’s exact location.

How many satellites are needed to locate a point?

It takes four GPS satellites to calculate a precise location on the Earth using the Global Positioning System: three to determine a position on the Earth, and one to adjust for the error in the receiver’s clock.

How many satellites does it take for GPS to work?

Using a constellation of 24 GPS satellites ensures that at least 4 satellites are within line-of-sight of any location on Earth at all times. The magic number is 4 because of the way that GPS calculates your exact position.

How many satellites do you need for GPS?

To achieve global coverage for GPS, 24 satellites are required. The first of the 24 was launched in 1989 and the 24th was launched in 1994. GPS satellites only last about 10 years, and often need servicing during their lifetime, which is why there are currently 32 GPS satellites in orbit.

How do GPS satellites know where they are?

The GPS satellites circle the Earth at an altitude of about 20,000 km (13,000 miles) and complete two full orbits every day. The GPS satellites are not in a geostationary orbit, but rise and set two times per day. Each satellite broadcasts radio waves towards Earth that contain information regarding its position and time.

How many GPS satellites does the USA use?

Navstar is a network of U.S. satellites that provide global positioning system (GPS) services. They are used for navigation by both the military and civilians. These 24 main GPS satellites orbit Earth every 12 hours, sending a synchronized signal from each individual satellite.