June 2015


Landsat Images Provided to the International Charter in June 2015
Jun 30, 2015Landsat Images Provided to the International Charter in June 2015

This month, 31 Landsat scenes were ingested by the USGS Hazard Data Distribution System to provide data for International Charter activations.

first image from Sentinel-2A covers the Po Valley, framed by the Alps in the north and the coastal mountains of France and Italy in the south
Jun 30, 2015Sentinel-2 Delivers First Images

Just four days after being lofted into orbit, Europe’s Sentinel-2A satellite delivered its first images of Earth, offering a glimpse of the ‘color vision’ that it will provide for the Copernicus environmental monitoring program.

Sentinel-2A
Jun 26, 2015USGS Welcomes European Space Agency’s New Land Observing Satellite

[Source: Jon Campbell, USGS] The U.S. Geological Survey salutes the European Space Agency (ESA) on the successful June 23 launch of its Sentinel-2A satellite, the second satellite to be launched in Europe’s Copernicus environment monitoring [...]

graphic from the L8 data users handbook
Jun 25, 2015Landsat 8 Data Users Handbook Now Available

Landsat 8 data users will be glad to hear that the new Landsat 8 Data Users Handbook is now available online in PDF format from USGS.

Landsat & Sentinel-2 band comparison
Jun 23, 2015Sentinel-2A Launches—Our Compliments & Our Complements

The European Space Agency’s Sentinel-2A successfully launched into orbit last night from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana aboard a Vega rocket (10:52 p.m. local time; 01:52 GMT).

ESA Earth from Space screenshot
Jun 19, 2015ESA’s Earth From Space Features a Landsat 8 Image of San Francisco Bay

The European Space Agency's Earth from Space, presented by Kelsea Brennan-Wessels from the ESA Web-TV virtual studios, recently featured a Landsat 8 image of the San Francisco Bay in this edition: + Visit ESA YouTube page Read more [...]

flooding of Nicholson River in 2009
Jun 18, 2015A New Era of Space Collaboration between Australia and U.S.

On June 18, 2015 in Canberra, Australia, the U.S. Geological Survey and Geoscience Australia signed a comprehensive new partnership to maximize land remote sensing operations and data that can help to address issues of national and international [...]

Coral reef with fish courtesy of Jeremy Cohen, Penn State University
Jun 17, 2015Satellites Enable Coral Reef Science Leap from Darwin to Online

With Earth-observing satellite data, scientists can now monitor the health of coral reefs, even in the most remote regions scattered around the globe where it is otherwise difficult to see changes.

ProPublica Landsat Las Vegas
Jun 4, 2015ProPublica Welcomes Readers to Las Vegas with Landsat

ProPublica has put together an interactive graphic called Welcome to Las Vegas*" that uses 40 years worth of Landsat data, together with a graphic representation of the city's changing skyline and its water use statistics.

Satellite-located landslides
Jun 4, 2015Scientist-Volunteers Map Landslides from Nepal Quakes

As millions of people regroup from earthquakes in Nepal, a team of international volunteers is combing through satellite imagery of the region to identify additional hazards: earthquake-induced landslides. “Landslides are a common secondary [...]

fall foliage from Landsat 8
Jun 2, 2015Technical Announcement: USGS Ups Ease of Use for Landsat Data

The USGS has begun production of higher-level (more highly processed) Landsat data products to help advance land surface change studies. One such product is Landsat surface reflectance data.

students interact with Landsat 8 mosaic of NYC
Jun 1, 2015Landsat at the 2015 World Science Festival

The World Science Festival in New York, NY provided a fascinating array of public explorations into the nature of science from May 27 to 31, 2015.

calved icebergs from Jakobshavn Isbrae glacier
Jun 1, 2015Ebb & Flow of Greenland’s Glaciers: New Study Could Improve Understanding of Greenland’s Contribution to Sea-level Rise

In northwestern Greenland, glaciers flow from the main ice sheet to the ocean in see-sawing seasonal patterns. The ice generally flows faster in the summer than in winter, and the ends of glaciers, jutting out into the ocean, also advance and [...]

Landsat Images Provided to the International Charter in May 2015
May 31, 2015Landsat Images Provided to the International Charter in May 2015

The International Charter is a system that supplies free satellite imagery to emergency responders anywhere in the world.

the sound of deforestation
May 28, 2015The Sound of Deforestation, A Hack to Make Data Sing

In his lightning talk Lagomasino proposed a challenge to help study deforestation by linking satellite imagery and ground-images gathered via crowdsourcing

RSESTeP students
May 26, 2015A Reward for Teachers: Remote Sensing Earth Science Teacher Program (RSESTeP)

As part of a NASA-associated program, Michael Geiswhite and 28 of his 11th grade students from North Schuylkill Junior-Senior High School studied a coal mine fire that ignited in 1962 in Centralia, PA and forced the permanent exodus from their [...]

Odyssey of the Mind logo
May 25, 2015Landsat at the Odyssey of the Mind Conference

Science and engineering enthusiasts of all ages at the 2015 Odyssey of the Mind World Finals competition were introduced to how Landsat sees the world.

Dr. Martin O'Leary
May 22, 2015Here’s Looking at You Landsat, via @LandsatBot

Dr. Martin O'Leary is a glaciologist with Wales' Swansea University. He spends most of his time modeling glacier movements and from time-to-time he uses Landsat data to check things out, to get a lay of the land—or glacier. As a pet project he [...]

Virginia wine country
May 20, 2015Landsat Helping in Virginia Wine Country

The Virginia Wine Board partnered with Wise DEVELOP to map the extension of Virginia vineyards. Vineyard extent was measured using data from Landsat 8 Operational Land Imager (OLI).

Landsat image of blocked road
May 14, 2015Gorkha Quake-Induced Chongsecun Landslide and Lake (Tibet)

The Chongsecun landslide was found by a Canadian government scientist (Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations Canada) scrutinizing post- and pre-quake Landsat 8 images.

Landsat hyperwall talk
May 8, 2015Landsat at the Maryland Library Association

Libraries serve their communities in wonderful ways and can be effective venues for NASA outreach and public engagement.

Landsat 8 image of Langtang Valley
May 5, 2015Landsat Shows New Hazards Arising in Manaslu/Langtang Region of Nepal

The April 25, 2015, magnitude 7.8 Gorkha earthquake in Nepal triggered devastating landslides in Langtang Valley. Ice, snow and debris avalanches, rockfalls and landslides also occurred widely in other areas of the Nepal Himalaya. Landsat 8 [...]

Landsat image showing post-earthquake landslide in Langtang Valley.
May 2, 2015Landsat 8 Reveals Extent of Quake Disaster in Nepal’s Langtang Valley

The magnitude 7.8 Gorkha earthquake that struck Nepal on April 25, 2015, caused extensive damage in Kathmandu Valley and severely affected Nepal's rural areas. Space agencies around the world are providing extensive resources in a huge [...]

2015 William T. Pecora Award Announcement: Nominations Accepted through June 15, 2015
May 1, 20152015 William T. Pecora Award Announcement: Nominations Accepted through June 15, 2015

The William T. Pecora Award is presented annually to individuals or groups that have made outstanding contributions toward understanding the Earth by means of remote sensing.

Landsat Images Provided to the International Charter in April 2015
Apr 30, 2015Landsat Images Provided to the International Charter in April 2015

This month, 53 Landsat scenes were ingested by the USGS Hazard Data Distribution System to provide data for Charter activations.

Mike Taylor at Global Citizen 2015 Earth Day
Apr 23, 2015Passing on Our Landsat Passion this Earth Day

This past weekend, NASA shared the National Mall with rock stars of the likes of No Doubt, Mary J Blige, and My Morning Jacket among others.

Data processing, TOA, SR of Mt. Vesuvius image
Apr 20, 2015USGS Fact Sheet on Landsat Surface Reflectance Data Available

In support of the guidelines established through the Global Climate Observing System, the U.S. Geological Survey has embarked on production of higher-level Landsat data products to support land surface change studies. One such product is Landsat [...]

satellite drawing
Apr 16, 2015Landsat 9 Is Coming

NASA and USGS have started work on Landsat 9, planned to launch in 2023.

tornado track
Apr 15, 2015NASA’s SPoRT Disaster Response Team Provides Landsat Imagery for Illinois Tornadoes

On April 9, 2015, severe thunderstorms produced several reports of damaging wind, hail, and tornadoes — including one particularly strong (EF-4) long-track tornado across north-central Illinois.

Sagebrush photo from USGS
Apr 10, 2015Climate Change May Pose Substantial Future Risk to Sagebrush Habitat in Southwestern Wyoming

Climate change may pose a substantial future risk for sagebrush habitat in southwestern Wyoming, and thus adversely affect the regional summer habitat and nesting areas of sage-grouse, according to a new study by the United States Geological Survey.

Faults in Xinjiang, Landsat 8 image
Apr 8, 2015Landsat “Faults in Xinjiang” Wins Tournament Earth 2015

A Landsat image has won the NASA Earth Observatory Tournament Earth 2015!

Algal bloom
Apr 7, 2015NASA, NOAA, EPA and USGS Join Forces to Put Satellite Eyes on Threat to U.S. Freshwater

NASA has joined forces with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and U.S. Geological Survey to transform satellite data designed to probe ocean biology into information that will help protect [...]

Landsat Images Provided to the International Charter in March 2015
Mar 31, 2015Landsat Images Provided to the International Charter in March 2015

The International Charter is a system that supplies free satellite imagery to emergency responders anywhere in the world.

Landsat mosaic of Australia
Mar 31, 2015Holding the Key—Australia Unlocks Its Landsat Archive

In Australia, the Unlocking the Landsat Archive (ULA) project has created a "living and accessible" archive of Landsat 5 and 7 data, for years 1998–2012.

Server farm at Google
Mar 26, 2015Big Data Helps Scientists Dig Deeper

In 2008, the U.S. Geological Survey took 3.6 million images acquired by Landsat satellites and made them free and openly available on the Internet.

Earth data
Mar 26, 2015More Ways to Get Landsat Data

Last Thursday, Amazon Web Services (AWS) announced that it is now hosting Landsat 8 imagery on its publicly accessible Simple Storage Service (S3).

vicarious calibration
Mar 25, 2015Landsat and the Private Tech Sector: Direct and Complementary Uses of Imagery

Landsat is a key data input for many products developed and used in water resources, agricultural monitoring, land use and land cover monitoring, forest management, and development planning.

Fremont Lake Basin
Mar 23, 2015Historical Satellite Images Reveal Snow is Melting Earlier in Wyoming

A NASA study of a basin in northwestern Wyoming revealed that the snowmelt season in the area is now ending on average about sixteen days earlier than it did from the 1970s through the 1990s.

iGETT participants
Mar 16, 2015Landsat Helps to Build a Geospatial Workforce

The federal government has invested billions of dollars to ensure our country's leadership in space-based observations of our planet. We need a workforce that is fully prepared to understand and use this data for solving problems of local, [...]

TIRS
Mar 16, 2015L8 TIRS Data Processing Resumed

On March 13, 2015 at 4:00 pm CT, processing of Landsat 8 Thermal Infrared Sensor (TIRS) data resumed. The newly processed data includes the revised Calibration Parameter Files established after the mechanism control electronics (MCE) swap on [...]

Mountain pine beetle destruction
Mar 7, 2015Landsat-Based Insect Atlas Gives Best View of Outbreaks in Forests

Scientists for the first time have simultaneously compared widespread impacts from two of the most common forest insects in the West—mountain pine beetle and western spruce budworm – an advance that could lead to more effective management policies.

TIRS
Mar 6, 2015TIRS Resumes Nominal Operations

The Landsat 8 Thermal Infrared Sensor (TIRS) resumed normal imaging operations.

The LDCM Thermal Infrared Sensor
Feb 26, 2015Landsat 8 Thermal Sensor Update

After extensive investigation and testing, the decision has been made to switch the TIRS Mechanism Control Electronics from the primary to redundant side on Monday, March 2, 2015.

DNC deforestation
Feb 25, 2015Landsat Shows Felling of Tropical Trees Has Soared

The rate at which tropical forests were cut, burned or otherwise lost from the 1990s through the 2000s accelerated by 62 percent, according to a new study which dramatically reverses a previous estimate of a 25 percent slowdown over the same [...]

energy reaching TIRS
Feb 19, 2015Landsat 8 Remote Sensing Special Issue

A trio of Landsat calibration scientists—Brian Markham (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center), Jim Storey (Stinger Ghaffarian Technologies for USGS EROS) and Ron Morfitt (USGS Earth Resources Observation and Science Center) Landsat 8 Special Issue [...]

Previous NLCD (2001) Alaska land cover product
Feb 18, 2015A Decade of Change in America’s Arctic: New Land Cover Data Released for Alaska

The latest edition of the National Land Cover Dataset (NLCD 2011) for Alaska is now publicly available. The extensive NLCD database continues to add to our understanding of where land cover change has occurred across the Nation over time. [...]

Elephant Foot Glacier
Feb 18, 2015Landsat Goes Over The Top: A Long View of the Arctic

On February 11, 2013, the Landsat 8 satellite rocketed into space to extend a four-decade legacy of Earth observations. A few months after launch, we published a composite of images that spanned 9,000 kilometers of land from Russia to South [...]

Lake Urmia
Feb 17, 2015Vanishing Lake Urmia

Iran’s Lake Urmia is one of the largest saltwater lakes in the world. With eight times as much salt as seawater, it’s the globe’s largest habitat for brine shrimp, which attract flamingos, egrets and other birds as they migrate across Asia. But [...]

Landsat 8 Beauty Shot
Feb 11, 2015Landsat 8 at 2 years

Two years ago today, Landsat 8 blasted off from Vandenberg Air Force Base!

Now & Then: The History of Portrait U.S.A.
Jan 29, 2015Now & Then: The History of Portrait U.S.A.

USGS released provisional Landsat surface reflectance products in December. Surface reflectance products correct for atmospheric distortions thereby providing “less hazy” images.