December 24, 2012 at 11:46 AM EST
Tracking Santa With Our Eyes in the Sky
The Energy Department's Los Alamos National Lab is tracking Santa Claus as he circles the globe the night before Christmas. Ed. note: This is cross-posted from energy.gov Every year since 1998, the Energy Department's Los Alamos National Lab has been using state-of-the-art technology to track Santa Claus as he circles the globe the night before Christmas. You'll be able to  monitor St. Nick's journey here  starting at 6 am ET on Christmas Eve. Since Santa doesn’t file his flight path with the Federal Aviation Administration, Los Alamos uses the latest technology to track his whereabouts on the globe, particularly the Cibola Flight Experiment (CFE) and Fast On-orbit Recording of TransientEvents (FORTE) satellites. These satellites were built respectively by Los Alamos National Lab and another partnership with Sandia National Labs, and mark a significant technological leap in the size of satellites and their abilities. They were originally put into their low-earth orbits (meaning an altitude of 1,200 miles) to help detect nuclear detonations and study lightning from space. read more
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