Cool Lasers & GPS

By: the monkey king


Have you ever seen a laser? (Besides from Star Wars or Star Trek). I would if I could give you 1 dollar if you know how many laser guns the military has invented. There are many types of lasers, (please stay tuned if you want to know). And then, there is GPS. As I said before, I would if I could give you 1 dollar if you can answer this question. How many GPS satellites are there? (Please stay tuned).


This paragraph is about lasers weapons. According to Craig Freudenrich, PhD, “You may have seen them in "Star Wars," "Star Trek," and other science fiction films and shows. The X-wing fighters, the Death Star, the Millennium Falcon and the Enterprise used laser weapons in great fictional battles to conquer and/or defend the universe. And starships aren't the only ones packing laser heat. Han Solo and others carried the blaster in "Star Wars." And Captain Kirk and other Starfleet personnel used phasers in "Star Trek." All of these weapons used directed energy, in the form of a laser beam, to disable or kill an opponent.” My Dad has a laser pointer, which one of the types of lasers. There are laser pointers, laser pens, laser guns, and laser printers.

This paragraph is about laser printers. Laser printers are printers that can print faster than other printers. I knew that because I have a laser printer at my house. I think that laser printers use lasers to print it fast. Most laser printers are around $100.

This paragraph is about laser guns in the military. As in the intro, I asked you if you knew how many laser guns has the military invented. In my research, I found out that they have invented 3 laser guns in the military (that’s what I remember). According to Reed Business Information Ltd, “LASER weapons mounted on trucks could be ready to roll into battle within five years. This week Boeing won a $36 million contract from the US Army Space and Missile Defense Command to build the optics needed to track and focus lethal laser energy onto rockets, artillery shells and mortar rounds. The High Energy Laser Technology Demonstrator will use a new solid-state laser powered by electricity from a truck-mounted diesel generator, rather than bulky and dangerous chemicals.”

This paragraph is about what LASER stands for. According to “laser stands for Light Amplification by the Stimulated Emission of Radiation”.

This paragraph is about how small a laser can get. According to “The smallest laser can fit into an average fingernail 2 million times. That’s a lot.”

         This paragraph is about things that use lasers. According to Matthew Weschler, “But lasers play a pivotal role in our everyday lives, too. The fact is, they show up in an amazing range of products and technologies. You'll find them in everything from CD players to dental drills to high-speed metal cutting machines to measuring systems. Tattoo removal, hair replacement, eye surgery -- they all use lasers.”


This paragraph is about GPS. According to, “The GPS is made up of three parts: satellites orbiting the Earth; control and monitoring stations on Earth; and the GPS receivers owned by users. GPS satellites broadcast signals from space that are picked up and identified by GPS receivers. Each GPS receiver then provides three-dimensional location (latitude, longitude, and altitude) plus the time.” My dad has a portable GPS, which he uses on Scout Camp trips, and other stuff related to that.

This paragraph is about GPS satellites. As I said in the intro, I asked you if you knew how many GPS satellites are there. According to wikipedia, “The satellites are called NAVASTARS.” According to Tracy V. Wilson, “There are currently 27 GPS satellites in orbit—24 are in active use and 3 of them are back-ups.”

This paragraph is about some cool gadgets. There are many GPS gadgets. There is the criminal tracker, child mapper, GPS wheelchair, and a personal locater. The criminal tracker is something that is put around somebody who is on a parole. You can mess with it all you want, but it won’t come off. The child mapper is something you put on your child’s cell phone. You would “fence” the places where they shouldn’t go. So if he/she went out of town, and you sent a “fence” there, and it would send an email immediately to you, which would say something like, “your child has gone out of the area.” The GPS wheelchair is for somebody who is handicapped. There are off-road tires on it and a GPS on it. And then, finally, the personal locater. The personal locater is a GPS that can save your life. Say you are skiing and there is an avalanche. If you have a personal locater, people will come right away to save you.

This paragraph is about GPS receivers. According to Tracy V. Wilson, “Like a cell phone, a GPS receiver relies on radio waves. But instead of using towers on the ground, it communicates with satellites that orbit the Earth. There are currently 27 GPS satellites in orbit -- 24 are in active use and 3 act as a backup in case another satellite fails. In order to determine your location, a GPS receiver has to determine: The locations of at least three satellites above you, and where you are in relation to those satellites.” It is saying that the GPS receiver is like a cell phone, but it only uses radio waves and satellites that orbit the Earth instead of using towers on the ground.

This paragraph is about how trilateration works. According to Marshall Brain and Tom Harris, “If you know you are 10 miles from satellite A in the sky, you could be anywhere on the surface of a huge, imaginary sphere with a 10-mile radius. If you also know you are 15 miles from satellite B, you can overlap the first sphere with another, larger sphere. The spheres intersect in a perfect circle. If you know the distance to a third satellite, you get a third sphere, which intersects with this circle at two points.” It means Trilateration works by using imaginary spheres.  Like, if you knew you were 10 miles away from a satellite (we'll call  "A") and 15 miles away from another satellite (we'll call "B"), then the imaginary spheres would overlap.  Then if you had just one more satellite (we'll call "C"), you could figure out exactly where you were.

This paragraph is about how fast GPS satellites orbit. According to Marshall Brain and Tom Harris, “Each of these 3,000- to 4,000-pound solar-powered satellites circles the globe at about 12,000 miles (19,300 km), making two complete rotations every day. The orbits are arranged so that at any time, anywhere on Earth, there are at least four satellites "visible" in the sky.” This means that GPS satellites are so fast; they go around the whole world twice every single day.


This paragraph is just reviewing my report. You have learned about lasers, laser weapons, laser printers, what laser stands for, how small a laser can get, lasers used in the military, and things that use lasers, like CD players, dental drills, and high-speed metal cutting machines. You also learned about GPS. You learned about GPS, GPS satellites, the criminal tracker, the child mapper, the GPS wheelchair, the personal locater, how many GPS satellites are active, how trilateration works, and GPS receivers. This concludes my presentation on GPS and Lasers. I hope you paid attention. THE END.