Most people know that satellites in orbit do useful things such as collect images of the Earth's surface. At the National Air and Space Museum I use satellite images in my job to understand changes in the Earth's land surface. Today millions of people are acquainted with satellite imagery on internet map services. People sometimes ask me if it's possible to see even more detail from space. In this post I'll explore what is really visible in different types of satellite data.
The images on internet map servers are provided by a recent generation of satellites that collect detailed images, including GeoEye's satellites. Objects smaller than automobiles are visible in some of these images. In the past, only military and reconnaissance satellite were capable of this kind of detail...
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