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How to Map Satellite Telemetry Data

Instructions
The Satellite Data Mapping Charts in this lesson will help students pinpoint a whooping crane's location on a map. Using the satellite data provided in each migration update, students should follow the instructions for columns A-J on the charts provided. With a transparency placed on top of your map, students can draw on it as they work to find the exact location. Step by step examples are also provided below.

Materials Needed

Example #1: Find the Crane's Latitude

DATE

Latitude

(A)
Crane's Latitude

(B)

(C)

(D)

(E)=
(C)x(D)

2/02/99

44.342 N

44 N

.342

115 mm

39.33 mm

Column A: Record the crane's exact latitude here.
Column B: Find the latitude line nearest the crane, directly to the south, and record that number here. Put a transparency on top of your map. Draw a line along this latitude line.
Column C: The crane is a fraction of a degree north of the line you just drew for B. As given in the satellite data, record the fraction as a decimal in this column.
Column D: Measure the scale of your map for latitude. Record the scale here in mm per degree latitude.
Column E: Find out how far north (in mm) the crane is located from the latitude line you drew for (B). To do this, multiply the decimal in column C by the scale of your map D and record the product here. Now draw a line this distrance north of the line you drew for (B). The crane is located on this latitude line.

Example #2: Find the Crane's Longitude

DATE

Longitude

(F)
Crane's Longitude

(G)

(H)

(I)

(J)=
(H)x(I)

2/02/99

75.951 W

75 W

.951

164 mm

155 mm

Column F: Record the crane's longitude here.
Column G: Find the longitude line nearest the crane, directly to the east, and record that number here. Put the transparency back on your map. Draw a line along this longitude line.
Column H: The crane is a fraction of a degree west of the line you just drew for G. As given in the satellite data, record the fraction as a decimal in this column.
Column I: Measure the scale of your map for longitude. Record the scale here in mm per degree longitude.
Column J: Find out how far west (in mm) the crane is located from the longitude line you drew for (G). To do this, multiply the decimal in column (H) by the scale of your map (I) and record the product here. Now draw a line this distrance west of the line you drew for (G). The crane is located on this longitude line, exactly where it intersects the latitude line.

Note to Teachers
You may need to alter these instructions, depending on the scale of the map you use. These instructions assume your map shows increments of 1 degree. If your map differs, follow the basic idea but adjust your numbers accordingly.

National Math Standards (NCTM)

• Specify locations and describe spatial relationships using coordinate geometry and other representational systems.

Geography Standards

• How to use maps and other geographic representations, tools, and technologies to acquire, process, and report information from a spatial perspective.