USAF_logoHave you ever wondered exactly how the GPS in your phone or car works? How does it knows where you are? How does it knows where you are going? Exactly what is the technology behind it. GPS stands for Global Positioning System. What does that mean? GPS is a satellite navigation system that provides location and time data for billions of uses. We use GPS from day to day and we probably don’t even think much about it. Any time you use the map function on your phone to look up directions you are using GPS. If you lose your iPhone and use the Find my Phone feature that also uses GPS. There are endless uses for this technology.

At the heart of the system are satellites. When we think of satellites we think of the government and movies that show us the spy satellites up in space. The Air Force originally created these systems to support their efforts around the globe, but they are now sharing them with the world to make it easier to provide directions and information. The fact of the matter is that satellites are a part of our everyday life. They are the backbones of telephone systems, televisions, navigation systems, weather systems, and more.

Usually we keep the control of such systems up to the experts. But what if you could help? Now thanks to a new program from the US Air Force, you can do just that. Every thought about being a rocket scientist? This may give you that feeling. LOL. Students, teachers, innovators, or those interested in satellites, space, and beyond are invited to help the Air Force decide on new locations to launch their newest GPS satellite. The third phase of the project, GPS IIF, launched back on October 10. This project is the first of its kind. It is the first time that the Air Force is opening up such projects for collaboration. It allows students and those interested based in STEM to collaborate on the project. Student and teachers can connect with experts to learn. Submissions in the third installment will be accepted through November 31.

A visit to the Air Force Collaboratory website instructs you to watch the briefing video and review the research material. This is to prepare for your mission. Sounds official and very important! 🙂 Current collaborations include Understanding Orbital Planes and Launch Location Possibilities.

For more information or to collaborate on the project, visit the Air Force Collaboratory website.


Disclosure: This is a sponsored post on behalf of the US Air Force. All opinions are my own.