Spy! The most dangerous job that a person takes up. He not only risks his own life but a lot more that can have huge and adverse effects on him and his family. Spying has come to us right from the times of history. Being spy to a kingdom, or the king to the current day spies of the country or even company or a political party. Now spying has stepped into space. Yes, there are spy satellites that keep a watch to track competition.
Previously this high altitude surveillance was a luxury only the superpowers could afford. With time there was a rise in the number of startups providing it. This is why the amount of spying increased. The startups have made a business out of the information they gather. The information is gathered using cameras and sensors installed on small surveillance satellites like the inexpensive cube satellites.
What is a cube satellite?
Cube satellites or CubeSat are a type of minisatellite. They usually perform space research. CubeSat is small and light weighted objects that are sent up in space as secondary payloads on a launch cycle. More than 1000 CubeSat have gone up in space since the commencement of 2019.
Why surveillance satellites?
There was a time when the need and the information of this information were less. With the increase in competition between companies and businesses the need increased. A few people recognized this need and now the information is available to everyone seeking it. There are almost 730 earth observation satellites and the number is expected to grow tremendously.
The use of the information
The businesses that particularly work in this sector perform surveillance of all the times. Like for example a company recently noticed that the number of cars parked in the parking lot of the big competitors was reducing. On research, they found out the company was having a bad time altogether. This kind of information seems of no importance to the one who is not concerned but to the one who can use it wisely it is precious than pure gold.
As seen earlier the gained information not only reveals a lot about the market it can also help predict the economy. Information that none can collect on land can be easily visible through the air. It can keep a check on illegal mining and large scale home demolition. The technology makes it difficult for the people trying it to hide large-scale abuses.
The rise of satellites
The number of these satellites are particularly on the rise because the cost of building, launching and operating has significantly reduced. A less weighted, less costly satellite made today can actually operate more accurately than the one prepared before which also had high weight and investment. Because of this the number of satellites going up and the amount of data produced are also very high.
Along with this the advances in Artificial Intelligence and machine learning easily analyze the huge volumes of data.
The process that initially began with cameras is now holding hands with sensors. These sensors on the satellites can detect heat, minerals, vegetation, and other things. They can also make 3D images of the landscapes below.
A recent satellite from the same family will be tracking wireless signals. It can study the phone signals and can also keep a watch on the cargo ships. This will help in the advancement of the cellular companies and the shipments because locating a ship in the sea is a critical business.
Like there are advances there are drawbacks too. The extent to which the satellites can information the information is limited. Though the cost of design, send and operate has reduced t is still costly and time-consuming to extract information from the data. It needs days and months of regular data to make sense and draw out conclusion. Without this, the data is of absolutely no use.
The world is moving at a fast pace and the advancing at a faster rate. There are things that are difficult and there are ways that make them easy too. There is a limit to the things these satellites can see and there are dangers that this can bring to us. But what is important is how we take things.