Minggu, 25 Januari 2009

Low-Cost Satellite Mapping

An article on BBC News website from Thursday outlines a company, Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL), that plans on developing a sensor capable of sub-meter resolution. I don't see any mention of a timeline or any information on the SSTL web-site, but the news article claims the new system is calleld ART (Accuracy, Reach, Timeless).

With a price tag of $70 million it still isn't "cheap", but it is considerably less than than the $500 million it cost to build and launch GeoEye-1. Considering NGA paid half the cost, a low-cost system may make satellite remote sensing more commercially viable. Hence, it the news that SSTL has been purchased by EADS Astrium doesn't come as a surprise.

This is certainly a development to keep an eye on, as the project will have a great shot at success if the the lower development and launch costs translate into lower data costs for consumers.


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