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Satellites

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Satellites

Year: 

The year 2017 was a significant one for spacecraft, with a record-setting 443 satellites deployed. This was a 96% increase from 2016 and easily broke the previous satellite deployment record of 240 in 2014. U.S. satellite operators across all three segments—commercial, civil government, and military—deployed 286 spacecraft, accounting for 65% of the total number of spacecraft placed into orbit in 2017.

The nation with the next highest share of spacecraft deployed in 2017 was China with 33 spacecraft (8%). Japan came in third, orbiting 23 spacecraft (5%) in 2017....


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Stats for this resource: word count: 244, number of exhibits: 1


Ground stations serve as the links between Earth and space, tying together terrestrial and space infrastructure. They track satellites and spacecraft, as well as communicate with and control satellites, probes, crewed space vessels, and space stations.
Year: 2016
Traditional satellite missions, such as Earth observation, communications, and positioning, navigation, and timing (PNT), continued dominating the global space industry, but other missions are coming forward. Air traffic control and ship traffic monitoring satellites are increasing as more...
Year: 2015
Satellites include a wide variety of systems performing an even wider range of missions from their different orbits. In 2015, launch operators attempted to place ### spacecraft into orbit (including both satellites and other types of payloads), a decrease of ##% from ### spacecraft in 2014. The...
Year: 2014
Satellites include a wide variety of systems performing an even wider range of missions from their different orbits. In 2014, launch operators attempted to place ## spacecraft into orbit (including both satellites and other types of payloads), an increase of ##% from ## spacecraft in 2013. The...
Year: 2013
In 2013, ## satellites were successfully launched on behalf of ## different countries. Of these, ## were “microsatellites,” with a mass of less than 91 kilograms (200 pounds). These satellites often carry scientific payloads or serve as demonstrations of new technologies. They usually operate...
Year: 2012
In 2012, ## satellites were successfully launched on behalf of ## different countries and international organizations. There were ## active satellites in orbit at the end of 2012, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists. Of these, ## satellites (approximately ##% of the total) were in GEO....
Year: 2011
The national defense needs of many countries help to drive demand for satellite capacity. Armed forces and international peacekeeping organizations from across the globe lease capacity from various commercial satellite operators or acquire Earth imagery services from commercial companies. Military...
Year: 2011
Telecommunications technology has made the world a much more intimate place. This is in no small part due to satellites circling the globe providing communications, scientific research, broadcasting, navigation, imagery, and support for national defense efforts. The first satellite, Sputnik, was...
Year: 2010
One classification of satellite is based not just on the spacecraft’s capabilities. Military satellites are generally characterized by the end users they are built to serve, not the type of service provided. Although they may perform the same functions as their non-defense counterparts, such as...
Year: 2010
Most modern satellites are specialized machines designed typically to serve a single specific mission, such as communications, remote sensing, scientific observation, or navigation. While the general trend over the past several decades has been to make larger and more powerful spacecraft, there has...
Year: 2009
Satellites provide a perspective of the Earth that cannot be matched by ground-based technology. In the early days of the Space Age, satellites served little purpose beyond demonstrating that they were in orbit. Decades of experience and technological advancement have yielded sophisticated craft...

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