Our lives are monitored by an increasingly sophisticated array of digital observers, be it from CCTV, speed cameras, internet usage monitoring, those blokes from TV licensing that won’t leave me alone… There’s no way around it, but what if – WHAT IF? – you could have your very own eye-in-the-sky, silently watching everyone and everything around you? That would take the edge off, right?
A British Company has the answer: small, cheap, easy-to-build spy satellites that can be launched into space and left to take photos of anything you care to gawp at from your orbiting observation post. Surrey Satellite Technology (SST) is making these babies at the low low cost of $10 million. Call it five million quid, or one decent EuroMillions win.
Considering the cost of a ‘normal’ spy satellites ranges into the hundreds of millions of dollars, it’s a bloody steal, and it’s certainly not beyond the realms of possibility that a small company or even an individual could buy one.
SST reckons that they can be used to seek “evidence of agricultural fraud, illegal oil dumping, the impact of natural disasters and likely deposits of minerals.” Eschewing the latest pathetic series of Big Brother so you can turn an entire nation into your early evening entertainment is one other possibility.
SST’s satellites weigh only 220 pounds and take 18 months to build. Five of them will be heading space-ward from Kazakhstan later this month on the back of an ex-Soviet rocket.
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