LONGITUDE, LATITUDE AND THE GPS

Learning Intention:

 

To understand what latitude and longitude are and how they are used in the Global Positioning System (GPS).

Activity:

 

The technologies for working out where we are in the world have been evolving for quite some time. For example, at about the time Captain James Cook sailed to New Zealand, the process for using clocks to help pin point where the Endeavour was, were just starting to come into use. In the years since then the technology has evolved into the Global Positioning System or GPS for short. Check out these two videos to get a feel for how latitude and longitude and the Global Positioning System works.

Thanks to Darren Gedge's Geography Channel for the video

Thanks to NASA Space Place for the video

Put into practice what you know:

 

Have a go at answering the following questions.

 

Some tips before you start:

  • You can find the GPS coordinates of any place using Google Maps 

  • You can change decimal GPS coordinators to Degrees, Minutes and Seconds using tools such as the Coordinate Convertor at Michigan University https://www.pgc.umn.edu/apps/convert/

Questions

  1. What are the GPS coordinates of your school?

  2. What is the latitude and longitude of your school in degrees, minutes and seconds?

  3. What are the GPS coordinates of your home?

  4. What is the latitude and longitude of your home in degrees, minutes and seconds?

  5. What is the GPS longitude coordinate for the Beehive in Wellington?

  6. Find a place in the Northland that has the same longitude as the Beehive.

  7. Find a place in the Northern hemisphere that has the same longitude as the Beehive.

  8. What is the GPS latitude coordinate for Apia in Samoa?

  9. Find a place in Zambia that is at the same latitude as Samoa. 

  10. Find a place in Peru that is at the same latitude as Samoa.