Scientist use different satellite systems to track plate motion on the Earth’s surface. Some are GPS, SLR, and inferometry. Although tectonic plates move a few inches a year they still can be recognized by the satellites. Using satellites to track plate motion is used in geodetic research.
One satellite is GPS. GPS is short for Global Positioning System. GPS can determine the region of geological structure, volcanic eruption. It can pin-point ground movement and monitor crust deformation. Scientist put sensors next to plate boundaries which detect movement. GPS is known to be used in cars and for traveling, but it has major uses when it comes to tectonic plate motion.
Another satellite system is SLR. SLR means Satellite Laser Ranging. It uses an absolute reference system for measurements of post glacial rebound, and temporal mass distribution determination of solid Earth and ocean. SLR uses laser to range satellite. The satellite sends back measurements. As time passes, and plates move, the satellites measure the movement of the plates. SLR is frequently used to track plate motion.
The last satellite system is inferometry. There two types of inferometry, VLBI and SAR. VLBI stands for Very Long Baseline Inferometry. VLBI uses satellite in space monitor ground motion. VLBI is capable of determining vertical and horizontal displacements in the surface. SAR is the second type of inferometry. SAR stands for Synthetic Aperture Radar. SAR involves taking pictures of a part of the Earth’s surface. The measurements are so precise that slight movements can be detected.
Scientists use satellite systems to detect plate motion. Some are GPS, SLR and inferometry. These are very strong machineries. They can detect small movements on the Earth’s.