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How Do Global Positioning Systems, or GPS, Work?

Illustration of the 29 GPS satellites orbiting the Earth

Product Type: Video Learning Clip
Audience: Educators, Students
Grade Levels: K-8
Year: 2005
Subjects: Technology

A NASA expert explains why GPS needs 24 satellites to work. He explains how trilateration works with a two-dimensional model. Then the expert shows how the information from four satellites can identify an exact location on Earth.

How Do Global Positioning Systems, or GPS, Work?
Duration: 4 minutes 15 seconds
> View QuickTime  [14MB]

Other video learning clips in this series:
Navigational Uses for Global Positioning Systems, or GPS
Early Navigation, How Was It Done?
Radar, Radio Waves and Light
What Is Electricity?
Experimenting With Electromagnets
Earth's Role as an Electromagnet and the Creation of Auroras
NASA's Research on the Sun
All About Solar Flares
What Are Geomagnetic Storms?

Page Last Updated: December 12th, 2014
Page Editor: Flint Wild