The Satellite Dashboard project is primarily based on space situational awareness data from ASTRIAGraph, which in turn is compiled from multiple international, governmental, commercial, and academic sources. Additional data is used on national registration from the Online Index of Objects Launched into Outer Space maintained by the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs, on satellite status and function from the Satellite Database maintained by the Union of Concerned Scientists, and on radio frequency spectrum use from filings made to the International Telecommunications Union.
Determining the exact position of space objects is a significant challenge, and one that is made more difficult due to the lack of verifiable and open datasets that can be compared and contrasted. We have taken our best efforts to ensure the data and analysis we provide is as accurate as possible. However, the data and analysis provided on this website should be considered as a best faith effort and not taken to be the authoritative answer at a given moment in time. In some cases, these different data sources may not agree. Where possible, we have indicated the source of the data used in presenting or analyzing the products on this website. If there is disagreement among the sources, we have used our best judgement to determine which one we feel is the most accurate at the time, which may change as more information is gathered.
ASTRIAgraph uses these sources to generate two main types of data for the Satellite Dashboard. The first type is basic data on cataloged human-generated objects in space, including an associated catalog identification (ID) number, its estimated orbital elements, and descriptive data such as launch date, country of ownership, and likely function. The catalog ID used is the one assigned by the source of the data. The orbital elements are derived from different sources within ASTRIAgraph, using the following hierarchy: (1) USSPACECOM, (2) JSC Vimpel, (3) SeeSat-L, (4) ASTRIA orbital determination (OD) results from LeoLabs data, (5) ASTRIA OD results from Starbrook data, and (6) ASTRIA OD results from DigitalGlobe data
The second type is a daily close approach prediction analysis, which is performed by propagating objects’ trajectories using the SPG4/SDP4 model and comparing miss distances between all pairs of objects. If the miss distance is within 150 kilometers (for GEO objects), the velocities of the objects are interpolated to time of closest approach (TCA). Then, if the relative velocity between the two objects is under 25 meters per second, the miss distance, TCA, data source, relative velocity, longitudes, and catalog IDs (assigned by ASTRIAGraph) of the objects in each event are logged in an output JSON file. Both sets of these data are made available to the Satellite Dashboard through private APIs.