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Google Government Space

Google Earth's New Satellites 118

Posted by Soulskill
from the all-the-better-to-see-you-with,-my-dear dept.
Rambo Tribble writes "The BBC provides some insights into the next generation satellites being built for Google by contractor DigitalGlobe in Colorado. The resolution of these satellites' cameras is sufficient to resolve objects that are only 25cm wide. Unfortunately, the public will be allowed only half that image quality, the best being reserved for the U.S. military. 'The light comes in through a barrel structure, pointed at the Earth, and is bounced around by a series of mirrors, before being focused onto a CCD sensor. The big difference – apart from the size – between this and a typical handheld digital camera, is that the spacecraft will not just take snapshots but continuous images along thin strips of land or sea.'"
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Google Earth's New Satellites

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  • by Vulch (221502) on Wednesday February 12, 2014 @05:43PM (#46232649)

    Usually means the sensor is just a single strip rather than a 2D array. The sensor is aligned across the path of the satellite and the motion along that path provides the other dimension.

  • by hubie (108345) on Wednesday February 12, 2014 @05:46PM (#46232679)

    'The light comes in through a barrel structure, pointed at the Earth, and is bounced around by a series of mirrors, before being focused onto a CCD sensor.

    Hmmmm, some kind of "barrel structure" and "bouncing light around with a series of mirrors". That all sounds pretty futuristic. And here I thought they could get by with just using something like a telescope.

  • by gnick (1211984) on Wednesday February 12, 2014 @05:47PM (#46232697) Homepage

    It is to bad that we can't even experience a high quality images of the world we live in.

    Actually, I was just outside (a scary thought I know) and was able to discern things much smaller than 25 cm. The world is incredible to view - The best way is to decide what you want to see most, then find a way to go take it in with incredible resolution. Not much tech involved than what most of us were born with.

  • Re:WTF (Score:4, Insightful)

    by davester666 (731373) on Thursday February 13, 2014 @01:57AM (#46235835) Journal

    Yes. They would be spying on the general population. They would be busy video installing camera's in major cities. They would tracking who you called, emailed, or texted. They would have roving armed groups descend on a location and demand people's identities and search their persons and belongings.

    Crazy stuff like that. Good thing we're in the land of the free, where stuff like this would never happen.

Computers can figure out all kinds of problems, except the things in the world that just don't add up.