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Satellite Orbits

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orbits

  1. Geosynchronous (GEO) satellite orbit  (22,300 miles) rotates at the same speed as   the earth’s rotation. Three satellites can  cover most of the globe.
  2. Medium earth orbit (MEO) satellites are  closer to users on Earth but 10-18 are  required for continuous coverage.
  3. Low earth orbit  (LEO); satellites are  closest to users (300-500 miles) but 40-70 satellites are required for full coverage.

According to the Satellite Industry Association (SIA) report, as of June, 2011.

http://www.space-library.com/1106sia_2011State-of-Satellite-Industry-Report.pdf

the following statistics were observed;

Operational Satellites by Orbit

  • Of the 986 satellites on orbit, 37% are commercial communications satellites
  • There are 480 LEO Satellites (49%), 405 GEO Satellites (41%), 65 MEO (7%) and 35 ELI or 4% (Elliptical Orbit)

Operational Satellites by Function

  • Commercial Communications 365 Satellites (37%),
  • Civil Communications 108 Satellites (11%),
  • Military Communications 84 Satellites (9%),
  • Meteorological 44 Satellites (4%),
  • Military Surveillance and other 89 Satellites (8%),
  • Navigation 75 Satellites (8%),
  • Remote Spacing 92 Satellites (9%),
  • Space Science 59 Satellites (6%),
  • other 50 (7%)
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