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How it Works

AstroVision customers will need real-time, or near real-time, Earth event data (weather, convective activity, fires, volcanic activity, mudslides, flooding), and will receive their data via their device of choice (radio, cell phone, PDA, pager, computer, TV). AstroVision will be able to provide a product much improved over what is currently available.

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Current Technology
To understand how AstroVision’s products work, you need first to understand what others are presently doing. In the Western Hemisphere, the current process for obtaining satellite weather information consists of either:

  • The U.S. government giving away red and infrared images at the rate of, on average, one frame every 20 minutes from its geostationary orbiting satellites (satellites that are stationed in a fixed position over the Earth);

  • The U.S. government giving away red, infrared and grayscale images from its low Earth orbiting satellites at a higher resolution than those from the geostationary satellites but delayed by up to a full day; or

  • Private, commercial remote sensing companies providing color images from their low Earth orbiting satellites, with better resolution than the government’s satellites, but delayed by up to a day or more.
These images are enhanced with color, geographic information, state lines, and weather data by value-added resellers and then sold to subscribers, such as television networks, utilities, airlines, and Internet service providers.

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AstroVision Technology
AstroVision, on the other hand, will provide its customers with continuous digital pictures live, in color, and in super-HDTV quality (over eight times the number of pixels per image as the highest quality HDTV image) for truly real-time weather and environmental information. Geostationary orbit is the ideal place from which to do that.

Some advantages of geostationary orbit:

  • Makes viewing movement across Earth's surface easier because Earth has no apparent motion when viewed from "GEO" ;
  • Enables continuous, live monitoring of the same area;
  • Allows moment-to-moment changes to jump out;
  • Facilitates detection of early warning for rapidly evolving events, such as forest fires or floods; and
  • Provides full disk (the entire Earth) view and global perspective.
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Comparison

Current Technology
AstroVision Technology
Black and white imagesFull color photos
One image available every 3 hours (entire Earth) or 15 minutes (U.S.)Continuous live images (available every second)
Poor resolutionHigh quality resolution

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What You Can See with AstroVision

Here are some examples of events visible uniquely with AstroVision satellites:

  • Lightning
  • Night side lights
  • Tornado formation
  • Volcanic eruptions
  • Real time hurricane/major storm progression
  • Meteorite airbursts (a kiloton on average every three days)
  • Space shuttle take-offs and landings
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Playing With Fire
Fires are ravaging the California forests, and emergency management teams are barely keeping things under control. Thick smoke is seeping into the city streets, and the wind patterns are constantly changing. Officials are having a difficult time pinpointing trouble spots to ensure citizens keep out of harm’s way.
How will they identify a safe evacuation route?

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