The satellite Proba-V created a global map of flights. It was an enormous work, they verified 25 million positions of more than 15k flights. The European Spatial Agency (ESA) monitored our planet for two years to test the technology that could be insert in every flight to make them safer. It was launched two years ago, its main aim was to control the growth of greenery; the satellite now has more than one probationary tool because it has to test some new technology as it orbits on the polar area.
Proba-V captures signals airplanes sent to airports about their height, speed and position. This new signaling system is called Ads-B and within a few years will be compulsory in every flight flying above Europe. “We focused on areas where there are no radars and where airplane traffic is rare,” explained Toni Delovski – one of the responsible of the instrument that is able to capture these signals.
Developing this technology and having at least two working satellites could help making flights safer even in areas out of radars range, or when it is difficult to gather information about airplanes’ whereabouts. For example, it could have been very useful for the MH 370 flight of Malaysia Airlines, the plane that disappeared and was not found yet.
Translation provided by Mary Ann D’Costa