geo = Earth
+ synchronous =
moving at the same rate).
A satellite in
geosychonous equatorial orbit (GEO) is located
directly above the equator, exactly 22,300 miles
out in space. At that distance, it takes the
satellite a full 24 hours to circle the planet.
Since it takes Earth 24 hours to spin on in its
axis, the satellite and Earth move together. So, a
satellite in GEO always stays directly over the
same spot on Earth. (A geosynchronous orbit can
also be called a GeoSTATIONARY Orbit.)