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LAGEOSLAser GEOdynamics Satellite (NASA)
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The fixed stations with coordinates in ITRF2008 were used for orbital arcs determination for both LAGEOS satellites.
Rutkowska, M., and Jagoda, M.: 2010b, Estimation of the elastic Earth parameters using the SLR LAGEOS 1 and LAGEOS 2 data.
and Beutler, G.: 2012, Sensitivity of Lageos orbits to global gravity field models.
The LAGEOS are target for laser pulses sent from ground stations, used to calculate their instantaneous distance (range); the outstanding precision of this tracking technique, named satellite laser ranging (SLR), allows a precise determination of their orbits.
As mentioned above, along the years the LAGEOS satellites turned out to be very good targets to be tracked.
In this work, we use the model EIGEN6S2, which is a global satellite-only gravity field model up to degree and order 260 based on data from Lageos, GRACE and GOCE satellites (Rudenko et al., 2014).
Application of the drifts for the pre-GRACE period, where the gravity field time varying model is based on the Lageos data and other less accurate data, could be a source of the modeling errors (here we mean the drifts for the lower part up to degree 50 of the model EIGEN-6S2; the long-term behavior of degree two coefficients determined from Lageos-1/2 SLR tracking data are rather reliable, see e.g.
Ciufolini had previously reported signs of frame dragging in the LAGEOS satellites' orbits, but this met with skepticism (S&T: July 1998, page 22).
While postmodern critics of travel narrative have emphasized the hopelessness of dealing objectively with the description of facts, the accuracy of maps has improved dramatically with satellite photography (TIROS, SMS, GEOS, LAGEOS, LANDSAT) and mapping processes obtained by automated technology that scans electronically the earth's surface, beams the signals back to earth and converts them into visible images that render the physical reality of Earth with a degree of accuracy that was almost unthinkable a few decades ago.
Today, using data from satellites such as LAGEOS and the Global Positioning System, as well as laser-ranging equipment left on the Moon by Apollo astronauts and the Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) network, it's possible to detect very minute changes in the Earth's rotation, on the order of a few millimeters a day.
LAGEOS I, the Laser Geodynamic satellite, looks something like a spinning disco ball orbiting 5,900 kilometers above Earth.
As an additional complication, LAGEOS has developed a wobble, causing the direction of its spin axis to change over the years.