Visualisations of satellites orbiting earth

From Quartz, an interactive graphic of every active satellite orbiting earth – all 1200 of them (as at August 2014).

The graphic’s based on data from the Union of Concerned Scientists, and lets you filter by age of satellite, launch country, purpose or primary user. You can also animate the satellites into their orbits, and see which are in low, medium or high orbit.

Satellites in Low Earth Orbit

Hover over any of the dots and you’ll see a summary of the satellite’s owners, age, characteristics and purpose.

Satellites in Medium Earth Orbit

Interesting facts about satellites

If you’re interested in New Zealand participation in commercial and other space activities, you might want to check out the Kiwi Space Foundation website, which is an unfinished beast but seems to be keeping track of main players and media reports.

Also, RocketLab, founded by New Zealander Peter Beck, which has kicked off its Electron “small, fast, & agile” satellite launch system.