Weather Satellite is a type of satellite that is primarily used to monitor the weather and climate of the Earth. Satellites can be either polar orbiting, seeing the same swath of the Earth every 12 hours, or geostationary, hovering over the same spot on Earth by orbiting over the equator while moving at the speed of the Earths rotation. These meteorological satellites, however, see more than clouds and cloud systems. City lights, fires, effects of pollution, auroras, sand and dust storms, snow cover, ice mapping, boundaries of ocean currents, energy flows, etc., are other types of environmental information collected using weather satellites.
Tether satellite is a satellite connected to another by a thin cable called a tether. The space tether idea had its origin in the late 1800s. The idea became more popular in the 1960s, and subsequently NASA examined the feasibility of the idea and gave direction to the study of tethered systems, especially tethered satellites.
A space station is an artificial structure designed for humans to live and work in outer space for a period of time.
To date, only low earth orbital (LEO) stations have been implemented, otherwise known as orbital stations. A space station is distinguished from other manned spacecraft by its lack of major propulsion or landing facilities-instead, other vehicles are used as transport to and from the station. Current and recent-history space stations are designed for medium-term living in orbit, for periods of weeks, months, or even years. The only space station currently in use is the International Space Station. Previous stations include the Almaz and Salyut series, Skylab and Mir.
Earth observation satellites are satellites specifically designed to observe Earth from orbit, similar to reconnaissance satellites but intended for non-military uses such as environmental monitoring, meteorology, map making etc. Geostationary satellites hover over the same spot, providing continuous monitoring to a portion of the Earth's surface. Polar orbiting satellites provide global coverage, but only twice per day at any given spot.
A spy satellite officially referred to as a reconnaissance satellite is an Earth observation satellite or communications satellite deployed for military or intelligence applications.
These are essentially space telescopes that are pointed toward the Earth instead of toward the stars. The first generation type took photographs, then ejected canisters of photographic film, which would descend to earth.
Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) is the standard generic term for satellite navigation systems ("sat nav") that provide autonomous geo-spatial positioning with global coverage. GNSS allows small electronic receivers to determine their location (longitude, latitude, and altitude) to within a few metres using time signals transmitted along a line-of-sight by radio from satellites. Receivers calculate the precise time as well as position, which can be used as a reference for scientific experiments.
Miniaturized satellites or small satellites are artificial satellites of unusually low weights and small sizes, usually under 500 kg (1100 lb). While all such satellites can be referred to as small satellites, different classifications are used to categorize them based on mass.
A communications satellite (sometimes abbreviated to COMSAT) is an artificial satellite stationed in space for the purpose of telecommunications. Modern communications satellites use a variety of orbits including geostationary orbits, Molniya orbits, other elliptical orbits and low (polar and non-polar) Earth orbits.
A biosatellite is a satellite designed to carry life in space.
NASA launched three satellites specifically named Biosatellite (1, 2 & 3) between 1966 and 1969.
► Bion series of satellites
► the Mars Gravity Biosatellite.
► Orbiting Frog Otolith
A space observatory is any instrument in outer space which is used for observation of distant planets, galaxies, and other outer space objects. This category is distinct from other observatories located in space that are pointed toward the earth for the purpose of reconnaissance and other types of information gathering.