Satellite data visualization for high school students

As part of the Irazú project, which launched the first satellite in Central America, a visualization was designed to motivate high school students to become interested in aerospace engineering in Costa Rica.

Thus, a javascript visualization was designed (and implemented) with a satellite "mission control" style and a science fiction look&feel.

The architecture of the visualization was defined as in diagram:

Scene 1: The orbit

The first scenario was the most complex since it has a viewing of the satellite's position in both two and three dimensions, the idea of these two projections was to make the young people reflect on the way in which the satellite orbits are usually presented and how they are in reality. All these positions were programmed to display the actual satellite position at that time.

Also below you can see some of the data collected by the satellite from the earth stations.

Scene 2: Visualization of the position of the International Space Station (ISS)

The satellite as such cannot be seen with the naked eye, which is why the research group decided that it would be good (for the target audience) to design a way of seeing the International Space Station (ISS) that is possible to see with the naked eye.

After several designs and validations, a 3D view of the country was decided, showing where the user is, where the station will pass and what time it is possible to see it.

Scene 3: Satellite parts infographics

In this scenario, an explanatory video was designed and generated showing with animations the parts of the satellite, what they are for and where they are inside the system.

Scene 4: Dendrometers parts infographics

Similarly, in this last scene, a video explaining the parts of the dendrometers (ground hardware) was generated, showing the operation and position of each component.


Ph.D. Franklin Hernández-Castro


Mariana Agüero-Soto

Juliana Artavia-Camacho

prof. dr. franklin hernández-castro, ph.d.