GPS or Global Positioning System is a satellite-based navigation system which is capable of providing varied information such as time, location and direction and that too in all kinds of weather conditions. This technology or system is extremely useful and finds application in many life situations and industries. It provides the useful information not just on earth but also near it or anywhere where there is a limited line of sight. GPS found use in military, commercial as well as civil purposes around the world and was found by the US government which continues to maintain it to date.

Originally, GPS was only created and intended for military applications in the US but later it was made available to the civilians as well. It is now a very commonly used technology, and one of the most common examples of it is GPS navigation for directions within countries, cities and towns, etc. This is free to use the service for anyone with a GPS receiver and works 24 hours a day, anywhere in the entire world.

How does GPS work?

Global Positioning System is a technology which has revolutionized the way we find directions. The GPS satellites rotate around the earth two times every day and send signal information to earth in an extremely precise orbit. The GPS end receivers use this information to know the exact location of the user and can then relay information like speed, track, distance, sunrise time, sunset time, bearing and track, etc. In order to calculate the 2D position and track movement, a GPS received should at least be connected to the signal sent by at least 3 different satellites. But if more than 3 satellites are locked, then a GPS receiver can also know the 3D position of a certain user.

Applications of GPS

GPS is considered as a dual-use system or technology which means that it finds application in both military and civilian purposes. It has become a very useful and crucial tool for not just surveillance and tracking but also scientific purposes, commerce, mobile phone applications, banking and in several other areas. To know more about the applications of GPS, you can go through the following given information.

  • Civilian: Most of the civilian applications of GPS make use of three components which are time transfer, relative movement and absolute location. GPS is widely used in Astronomy, Fleet tracking, automated vehicles, mining, emergency services and disaster relief, robotics, sports, aircraft tracking, surveying and tectonics, etc. These days, it is common for most vehicles to have inbuilt GPS navigation system technology which helps them find routes or ways to their desired location. Most mobile phones have the same facility as well.
  • Military: When it comes to the military application of GPS, the applications are wide and very crucial to modern day operations. Besides soldiers using GPS to find certain objects, this technology also aids target tracking, search and rescue missions, missile guidance and projectile guidance and patrol movements. GPS satellites also carry a few of the nuclear detonation detectors.