Polar Orbit

Is it possible for one satellite to pass over every corner of the Earth?

Firstly, the satellite’s orbit muts have a high inclination of close to 90°. Only then will it be able to pass over the polar regions. Secondly, the altitude must be low so that it has a high resolution view of the Earth surface. By “raster scanning” the Earth, the entire Earth’s surface can be mapped out after multiple passes.

Many photographers love night scene photography. The ultimate night scene photo is probably that of the Earth from above the atmosphere, shown in the video below. The complete picture is constructed from the images acquired by the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership Satellite (Suomi NPP). It took 312 satellite orbits to get a clear shot of every parcel of land surface.

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