Suggested Searches

Tracking and Data Relay Satellites

The Tracking and Data Relay Satellite system is NASA's network of specialized communications satellites in geosynchronous orbit that provide communications services to many NASA spacecraft. These satellites relay signals between spacecraft, including the International Space Station, and ground control stations on Earth.

Active Mission

The Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS) constellation consists of a number of satellites in geosynchronous orbit distributed over the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans. These satellites provide near continuous information relay services to over 25 missions including the Hubble Space Telescope, the International Space Station, and many of our Earth-observing missions like the Global Precipitation Measurement, Terra, and Aqua.

Mission Type

Tracking and Data Relay Satellites

managed by

Goddard Space Flight Center

number of satellites





Tracking and Data Relay Satellites

TDRS comprises the space segment of the government-owned portion of the Near Space Network. TDRS can provide near-constant communication relay links between its ground facilities (located in White Sands, New Mexico and Guam) and orbiting satellites below geosynchronous orbit.

Learn More about Tracking and Data Relay Satellites
TDRS-M Encapsulated
Inside the Astrotech facility in Titusville, Florida, the payload fairing for NASA’s Tracking and Data Relay Satellite, TDRS-M, is moved into position to encapsulate the spacecraft. TDRS-M is the latest spacecraft destined for the agency’s constellation of communications satellites that allows nearly continuous contact with orbiting spacecraft ranging from the International Space Station and Hubble Space Telescope to the array of scientific observatories.
NASA/Kim Shiflett

Communicating with Missions

Reliable space communication systems are critical to every NASA mission. Spacecraft commands, never-before-seen images, and scientific data are sent and received daily by NASA's giant antennas on Earth.

Learn More about Communicating with Missions
Three Near Space Network antennas can be seen in front of a rising Sun at the Second Tracking and Data Relay Satellite System (TDRSS) Ground Terminal.