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Countdown to Launch of Landsat 9

Countdown to Launch of Landsat 9

Countdown to Launch of Landsat 9

We’re launching Landsat 9 — the ninth in a series of satellite missions from NASA and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) that have been collecting images of our planet for almost 50 years. Follow along as we count down to launch!

Countdown to Launch of Landsat 9

A normal launch countdown starts at 10, but for Landsat 9, we’re jumping in with L-9!

There are 9 million images in the USGS/NASA Landsat archive! They’re all available for free, for use by scientists, data managers, and anyone else who’s interested. You can even download them!

Countdown to Launch of Landsat 9

Landsat 9 won’t be orbiting alone. Working together, Landsat 9 and Landsat 8 will completely image Earth every 8 days! This helps us track changes on the planet’s surface as they happen in near-real-time.

Countdown to Launch of Landsat 9

Landsat sees all 7 continents! From Antarctic ice to growing cities to changing forests, Landsat measures land — and coastal regions — all around the globe.

Countdown to Launch of Landsat 9

Working in space is really hard. Landsat 6 never made it to orbit, an important reminder that failures can be opportunities to learn and grow. Shortly after the unsuccessful launch, engineers got to work on Landsat 7, which is still collecting data today — 22 years later.

Countdown to Launch of Landsat 9

We have 5 decades of Landsat observations, the longest continuous record of Earth’s land surfaces in existence! While building the original Landsat in the 1970s, it would have been hard to imagine that this mission would still be providing crucial data about our planet today.

Countdown to Launch of Landsat 9

For each color band collected, Landsat 9 will see 4 times the shades of light as the previous Landsat mission! With more than 16,000 different intensities detected, Landsat 9 will be able to see crucial details on our planet’s surface.

Countdown to Launch of Landsat 9

Our eyes detect 3 colors of light: red, green, and blue — and Landsat does too! But Landsat 9 also detects wavelengths that can be combined to measure things our eyes can’t, like crop stress, coral reef health, fires, and more.

Countdown to Launch of Landsat 9

There are 2 instruments on Landsat 9! The Operational Land Imager 2 collects light, and works kind of like our eyes — or cameras — to make data-rich images. The Thermal Infrared Sensor 2 measures temperature, helping monitor plant health, fires, and more.

Countdown to Launch of Landsat 9

The Landsat program is the result of 1 amazing partnership! For more than 50 years, we’ve worked with the U.S. Geological Survey to design, build, launch, and manage Landsat satellites.

Countdown to Launch of Landsat 9

Two agencies working together makes for the longest continuous record of Earth’s surfaces. Now, let’s launch this satellite!

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