Landsat Missions

Landsat represents the world's longest continuously acquired collection of space-based moderate-resolution land remote sensing data.

Landsat Headlines

September 07, 2018

September 7, 2018 - New U.S. Landsat Analysis Ready Data Factsheet

The newly-published U.S. Landsat Analysis Ready Data factsheet is now available from the USGS Publications Warehouse.  It is also linked from the Landsat Missions Web Site. (read more)

August 29, 2018

August 29, 2018 - Summer 2018 Landsat Science Team Presentations Now Available

Presentations from the summer Landsat Science Team meeting held August 8-10, 2018 in Boulder, Co are now available (read more).

August 28, 2018

August 28, 2018 - Landsat Collections Fact Sheet Now Available

The U.S. Geological Survey has released a new fact sheet that describes its reorganization of the Landsat archive into a tiered collection structure (read more).

August 23, 2018 – Landsat 1-5 MSS Pre-Collection Data to be Removed

On September 24, 2018, the Pre-Collection Landsat 1-5 Multispectral Scanner (MSS) dataset will be removed from EarthExplorer (read more).

August 22, 2018

August 22, 2018 - Landsat 9 Element Critical Design Reviews Successfully Completed

Landsat 9 Ground System Element Critical Design Reviews (CDR) were successfully completed in June, July and August for three elements of the ground system (read more).

August 2, 2018 - USGS Landsat Archive Hits 8 Million

This week the USGS reached eight million scenes in the USGS Landsat archive! All 8 million Landsat scenes are available to download from EarthExplorerGloVis, and the LandsatLook Viewer (read more).

July 18, 2018

July 18, 2018 – New Landsat Update Issue Published

Landsat Update Volume 12 Issue 2 includes Landsat 9 milestones, updates on the Landsat Science Team and Landsat Analysis Ready Data, as well as other Landsat topics you should know about (read more)

June 25, 2018 – Landsat Session at AGU Fall Meeting

A Landsat Session at the 2018 AGU Fall Meeting will cover a breadth of topics from how the Landsat mission is operated, to how data is collected, archived and distributed, to what archive, products and data access enhancements are planned. (Read More)

June 26, 2018

June 26, 2018 - Landsat Advisory Group undertakes a Landsat Cost Recovery Study

The Department of the Interior (DOI) and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) have requested a Federal Advisory Committee to review USGS’s current free-and-open policy for user access to Landsat data. (Read More)

June 15, 2018

June 15, 2018 - Landsat Data Access and Downloads Unavailable; New Acquisitions Delayed

On June 20, 2018, the EarthExplorer interface will be unavailable from 7:00 a.m to 12:00 p.m. CT for scheduled monthly system maintenance. Landsat Level-1 and Level-2 on-demand downloads will remain unavailable until about 2:00 p.m. CT for necessary inventory updates. (Read More)

National Land Imaging Collections

Beetle Damage in the Black Hills
Ponderosa pine forests in the Black Hills of South Dakota are the focus of this week’s USGS Image of the Week.
Lake Thompson, South Dakota
Many lakes in South Dakota's Prairie Pothole Region are expanding.
Burning Man's Temporary City
Every year, tens of thousands of people descend upon an unforgiving windswept playa in northwestern Nevada to build a city.
One Year Ago: Total Eclipse Darkens Nebraska Sandhills
A total solar eclipse darkened the skies over the United States on Aug. 21, 2017.
Mendocino Complex Fire Scorches Northern California
Landsat 8 captured satellite views of California's largest wildfire on record in the summer of 2018. The Mendocino Complex fire in northern California is a combination of two fires: the Ranch Fire and the River Fire.
8 Million Landsat Scenes
The Landsat archive has added its 8 millionth scene.
The Progress of Landsat Sensor Technology
Landsat sensor technology has come a long way since the days of the Return Beam Vidicon cameras on the first three Landsat satellites.
Deadly Mudslides in Japan
Torrential rainfall swamped western Japan in July of 2018.
Solai Dam Tragedy in Kenya
Heavy spring rains and widespread flooding has killed more than 150 people and displaced thousands in Kenya this year.
A History of Lava Flows at Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano
New fissures opened up on Hawaii's Big Island in early May 2018, spouting lava that destroyed homes in the Leilani Estates neighborhood.
Beetle Damage in the Black Hills Lake Thompson, South Dakota Burning Man One Year Ago: Total Eclipse Darkens Nebraska Sandhills Mendocino Complex Fire Scorches Northern California 8 Million Landsat Scenes The Progress of Landsat Sensor Technology Deadly Mudslides in Japan Solai Dam Tragedy in Kenya A History of Lava Flows at Hawaii

Landsat Twitter

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“Measuring the past contributes to our understanding of the long-term consequences of our past economic and societal choices, and contributes to more informed management decisions in the future.”

Jean-François Pekel, who used 3 million Landsat images to make global surface water, Smithsonian Magazine, Dec 9, 2016

“What we’re able to do now is track the flow of the world’s ice from pole to pole and on every continent.”

Ted Scambos,, a glaciologist at the National Snow and Ice Data Center, talking about the Landsat 8-based GoLIVE project, Climate Central, Dec 21, 2016

“We cannot do this project if the Landsat program doesn’t deliver this open data to the scientific community… We are benefiting from these long-term investments now.”

Lilian Pintea, VP of conservation science, Jane Goodall Institute

“From a valuation standpoint, Landsat is an extremely valuable public good just in its direct use—let alone the economic value of all the indirect uses built on the direct data.”

John Loomis, an economist at Colorado State University, Landsat Benefited U.S. Economy by $1.8 Billion in 2011, Aug 30, 2015

“The Landsat archive holds great potential for studying the processes behind the Greenland Ice Sheet’s response to our changing climate over multi-decadal time scales. It is essential that this record be exploited over other areas of the Greenland Ice Sheet.”

Noel Gourmelen, Despite Warming, Landsat Reveals Decadal Slowdowns on Greenland Ice Sheet, Oct 28, 2015

"We are now beginning to see that the combination of high performance computing, data storage facilities, data preparation techniques, and advanced systems can materially accelerate the value of Landsat data."

Dr. Suzette Kimball, acting Director of the USGS, A New Era of Space Collaboration between Australia and U.S., Jun 18, 2015

“...the time is now right and urgent to apply space technology towards the solution of many pressing natural resources problems being compounded by population and industrial growth.”

Stewart L. Udall, Secretary of the Interior (1966)

“The economic value of just one year of Landsat data far exceeds the multi-year total cost of building, launching, and managing Landsat satellites and sensors.”

Landsat Seen as Stunning Return on Public Investment, Jan 14, 2015, USGS press release

“The value of Landsat data is internationally recognized as indispensable to science, natural resource management, commerce, security, foreign policy, agriculture, and education.”

National Geospatial Advisory Committee, Landsat Advisory Group, Statement on Landsat Data Use and Charges, Sept 18, 2012

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Landsat represents the world's longest continuously acquired collection of space-based moderate-resolution land remote sensing data. Four decades of imagery provides a unique resource for those who work in agriculture, geology, forestry, regional planning, education, mapping, and global change research. Landsat images are also invaluable for emergency response and disaster relief.

 

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Landsat Updates

The Landsat Update is an informal communication tool, prepared periodically and distributed electronically to USGS Landsat partners, to provide information about Landsat activities and related topics of interest.

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