History Of The Global Positioning System

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To understand where the Global Positioning System first began we have to go back to the time of the Cold War. It was in 1957 when the Soviet Union launched the first ever man made satellite into orbit. This satellite was launched as a demonstration of technological advancement and strength over the U.S. What the Soviets least expected was that two Americans would soon find this satellite essential in the discovery of an amazing new technology. Two physicists by the name of William Guier and George Weiffenbach decided they would try to determine a receiver’s location using Sputnik’s position along the Earth’s orbit. They were successful at doing so and in turn, this event marked the beginning of the development of the Global Positioning System. Before the GPS was developed to perfection there were other prototypes of a navigational system that created the basis of what we now use today. In 1967, the United States Navy developed the Timation Satellite, which was a satellite that allowed for the placement of precise clocks in space (Proco). The reason behind this has to do with time dilation, which we will cover later on. Because of the Cold War, secrecy of the project was imperative to the United States Military. Therefore, few people even knew about the idea of a technology that was able to pinpoint locations on Earth with impressive accuracy (The GPS, n.p). The Global Positioning System we now use today was created in 1973 to be a more sophisticated and reliable option to all the former navigation systems that existed at the time. This was done so by combining old methods of location navigation and including new ideas from many different classified engineering design studies from the 1960s (The GPS, n.p). It took time to get the G... ... middle of paper ... ...floods. Scientists in the California area from Scripps Institution of Oceanography as well as NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory have been working off of the already existing GPS stations throughout California. The prototype system, which was tested earlier last July, makes it possible for the monitoring of many dangerous natural disasters in real time or even in fact, can predict them before they actually occur. The Global Positioning system has come a long way since William Guier and George Weiffenbach chose to mess around with Sputnik’s location in its orbit. It has gone from being one of the most secretive projects ever developed to being one of the most popular and mostly used technologies in our modern day lives. There is no doubt that the future of GPS technologies hold many more bright and innovative ideas that could once again change how our society lives.

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