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Geosynchronous Satellites

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Geosynchronous Satellites

  1. Introduction to Geosynchronous Satellites (GEO satellites)

Geosynchronous satellites are also known as geostationary satellites. A GEO satellite orbits the Earth in an equatorial orbit at an altitude where is takes the satellite a full 24 hours to rotate round the planet. It is located exactly 22,300 miles out of space. A GEO satellite spins on its axis and will always remains over the same fixed point of the planet at all time. Its orbit is usually circular with an inclination of 0º (TheTech 30/3/2002).


Pic 1: Geosynchronous Orbit (Introduction to Satellites and Orbits 4/7/2002)

GEO satellites are ideal for the use as communication satellites and also for remote imaging as they always remain stationary and can repeatly scan the same points of the earth beneath them (Dundee Satellite Receiving Station 4/7/2002). Satellite television broadcasts and communications companies around the world make use of GEO satellites. The GOES meteorological satellites operated by the U.S. provide constant satellite coverage of the entire hemisphere from a geosynchronous orbit (Introduction to Satellites and Orbits 4/7/2002).

  1. Aims and Objectives

This project is made to understand the functions of the GEO satellite.

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  • Syncom 2 was the first GEO satellite.


  • 1964 Olympic games in Japan were telecast live by the GEO satellite Syncom III


  • 120 transponders available over the U.S., each capable of providing 1500 telephone channels or 1 television channel
  • Canada had their own GEO system; Intelsat was well on its way to another generation of global satellites
  • Indonesia had become the 3rd country to have their own satellite, Palapa
  • Comsat had launched the first mobile communication satellite, Marisat, in February 1976, to provide mobile services to United States Navy and other maritime customers.
  1. Usage of GEO satellites
  1. Communication Satellite

There are more than 100 communication satellites orbiting Earth. It acts as a relay station in space. People use them to bounce messages from one part of the world to another. It takes the voice communications that long to travel all the way up to the satellite and back to Earth. These messages can be telephone calls, television pictures and Internet. Communication satellites such as the EchoStar 3 move in a geosynchronous orbit (TheTech 30/3/2002).


Pic 2: EchoStar 3 (TheTech 30/3/2002)

  1. Weather Satellite

Weather satellites are used for earth observation purpose (remote sensing system).

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  1. Conclusion

In conclusion, the GEO satellite plays an important part in our lives. It helps us to communicate and to predict the weather. It is important to know how the satellite works as it saves our time, our lives, provide us with important information and for entertainment purposes.

                                                                (950 words.)


1) TheTech, 30/3/2002 www.thetech.org

2) Dundee Satellite Receiving Station 4/7/2002 www.sat.dundee.ac.uk/pdusfaq.html

3) Introduction to Satellites and Orbits 4/7/2002 www.chesapeake.towson.edu/data/orbits4.asp

4) Geostationary, LEO, MEO, HEO Orbits 4/7/2002 www.geo-orbit.org/sizepgs/geodef.html

Conclusion for the whole thing

There are 3 main types of satellites, which are the LEO satellites, GEO satellites, and polar orbiting satellites. With these satellites, communication, entertainment, information, weather forecast, prediction of natural disasters, rescues and many more benefits can be easily obtained.  

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