Conceptual Physics (12th Edition)

Published by Addison-Wesley
ISBN 10: 0321909100
ISBN 13: 978-0-32190-910-7

Chapter 10 - Think and Discuss: 90

Answer

Geosynchronous communication satellites have a period of 24 hours, just like the rotation of the Earth, and thus they appear to hover above a fixed point, P, on Earth. The satellite thus follows a circular path whose center is the Earth's center. For this satellite to remain exactly overhead at point P, the point must also follow a circular path whose center is the Earth's center. This is true only if point P is on the equator.
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