Posts Tagged ‘Google Earth Plugin’

Knee Deep in Satellite Debris

March 1st, 2009 No comments

Click to view the live satellite debris tracker

A quick update on the Google Earth browser plugin based tracker displaying the debris from the collision between the Iridium 33 and Cosmos 2251 satellites on February 10th.

I mentioned the possibility that the number of fragments tracked in the Norad orbtial elements might increase. Well they have. Threefold over the past week, from 134 up to 406.

Remarkably the application still smoothly animates all objects in real time, even on my single core PC, but inevitiably it sucks up more processing power. You may find it now lags on an old machine or slower browser. If the number increases further I may have to either cap the number displayed or ditch the smooth animation.

Anyway, click on the image above to see it in action.

Related: Here’s a neat simulation from Analytical Graphics which includes a statistical break-up model of the satellites immediately after impact.

New Imagery in Google Earth

February 28th, 2009 No comments

spot_the_differenceGoogle Earth Blog reports a stack of new high resolution imagery in Google Earth today (Feb 28th 2009) USA, France, Scotland, Africa, Iceland, Mongolia + many other places. Check out Frank’s post for up to date details.

Typically there’s a delay of a few days between this appearing in Google Earth and Google Maps, which means for a short while the Google Maps vs Earth plug-in side by side code example I mashed-up last year does something useful! It allows you to instantly compare the before and after.

A doddle to use this:

  • Switch to satellite view in the left map panel.
  • Type in a place name or address to fly instantly to that location in both maps.
  • Or drag one map and the other map will move too.

Full(ish) screen version here,
Or embedded below.

Read more…

Satellite Collision Debris Tracking in the Google Earth Plug-in

February 23rd, 2009 5 comments

Live Satellite Debris TrackerFollowing on from my visualization of the satellite collision over Siberia on February 10th involving Iridium 33 and Cosmos 2251, here’s an Google Earth browser plugin based tracker for the debris from the crash.

Full screen version here:

The application loads up to date Norad orbital elements on start up, and propogates the orbits of all 134 fragments smoothly in real time.

Remarkably the Google Earth API is powerful enough to move placemarks thousands of times a second to give the impression of completely smooth motion for hundreds of objects. On top of that modern browsers are fast enough to run all the Math heavy orbital computation in Javascript. So this is really-real-time tracking, not with delayed updates. Something that can’t be done in regular Google Earth.

I’m guessing the number of objects could increase over time as more wreckage is discovered. If that’s the case, just have to see how well it scales.

Chrome support for the Google Earth Plugin

February 20th, 2009 No comments

Google has just announced, the Google Earth browser plugin is now officially supported by Google Chrome 1.0+. That means no more annoying ‘unsupported browser’ message for Chrome users. If you already have the plugin installed, you won’t need to download anything extra – should work automatically.

To give it a trial run check out Google’s demo gallery. Or my own apps here.

Space Crash, Update

February 12th, 2009 1 comment

Space Crash! Google Earth PluginBecause you can never have too many ways to see the same thing. This is a browser based version of my satellite visualization from ealier today. Showing the February 10th coming together of US and Russian communication satellites, Iridium 33 and Cosmos 2251 over Siberia

Same idea as before, plots the locations of the two objects in the minutes leading up to the collision, but this one runs inside the Google Earth Plugin.

Read more…