So, the space program funded research that led to major advances In the satellite technology. In addition, to allow increased capabilities over small space and to reduce launch cost, the space program as pushed to develop integrated electronic circuits. This has led to the miniaturization of electronic components. These developments have led to the launching of numerous satellites that are currently orbiting the earth. The launch of Sputnik by the Russians in 1 957 launched the space race.
At the urging of US Congress both NASA and the Dept of Defense spearheaded the advances in both launch technology and satellite capabilities. During the ass’s the focus was primarily in developing satellites for defense purposes targeting monitoring and immunization capabilities. The Government funded a number of projects with companies Like RCA and Bell Labs to advance this field. In the 1 sass, private players like AT realizing the huge commercial potential of satellites, became Interested In the commercial applications of satellites.
On April 6, 1965 the global commercial satellite communications age began with COMBAT’S first geostationary satellite, early bird, which was launched from Cape Canaveral. Another major improvement was achieved when lower earth orbit (LEO) satellites were introduced later. These LEO titillates are cheaper to launch and operate as they require lower launch orbits and signal strength by virtue of their closer proximity to earth. Giant satellite networks like Iridium (77 satellites at a cost of $38) and Globular are now key players in this market.
The second key technological advance, the development of integrated electronic circuits, came about as a result of NASA funding early research projects with Universities and companies, to reduce the launch cost and demand for increased capabilities. These research later led to miniaturization and massive deduction In cost of electronics which now allows us to own myriads of electronic gadgets including HDTV, DVD, audio systems, etc all of which allows common people to experience hi-fidelity image and sound over their affordable home entertainment systems.
The mass availability of satellites has led to the development of the satellite Television and proliferation of TV channels. Providers like Dish Network currently serve millions of household across the country. Other providers like cable and over the air networks (like CBS, NBC) use satellites to transmit their programs to local taxation. For residents in rural areas and remote localities the only way to watch television is via satellite communication.
These advances In technology came about as a direct result of the space program and now have a major impact on the life of me and my family and friends. TV Is the major source of my entertainment In the form of shows and movies. I watch TV for news and current events. Living In Oklahoma where natural events like tornadoes are a major concern having live updates and weather warnings are critical for the safety of my family. TV is also the availability of satellites allows us to chose from numerous programs.
This has the benefit that now me, my mother and my daughter can each pick their programs of her choice. The availability of affordable electronics allows me to watch the programs over a large screen HDTV and watch movies over a surround sound system. This allows my whole family to sit and enjoy movies and sports events together. Space program has made TV a more personalized, affordable, and enjoyable experience for me, my immediate family and friends.