November 2016


Map of Columbia and the state of its forests
Nov 29, 2016Boston University Researchers Use Landsat to Discern Patterns of Deforestation Through the Decades

Colombia loses hundreds of km2 of rainforest every year to agriculture and industry.

RI forest 2015
Nov 21, 2016Landsat 8 Shows Forest Cover in Rhode Island with Gypsy Moth Damage

Twin satellite views show gypsy moth destruction in Rhode Island.

possible cal sites
Nov 17, 2016A Discovery That May Make Daily Calibration Possible

A South Dakota State University research team led by imaging engineer Larry Leigh has completed the first worldwide search for new satellite calibration sites through a partnership with Google Earth. The one-year project was made possible [...]

slash and burn deforestation
Nov 17, 2016Landsat Eyes Help Guard the World’s Forests

If trees could talk, they would say that Hansen is among their best friends. He is one the world's foremost forest sentries.

Aaron and Matt
Nov 16, 2016An Innovative Fix for Landsat 8 TIRS Imagery

Rochester Institute of Technology researchers have solved a problem nagging NASA’s Landsat 8 Earth-sensing satellite.

Txomin Hermosilla
Nov 1, 2016Visualizing Canada’s Forest Change, 1985–2011

A joint project of University of British Columbia and the Canadian Forest Service—made possible by free and open access to the Landsat archive—has characterized the changes to Canada's forest between 1985 and 2012.

74 Landsat Images Provided to the Disaster Charter, Oct. 2016
Oct 31, 201674 Landsat Images Provided to the Disaster Charter, Oct. 2016

The Charter concept is this: a single phone number is made available to authorized parties providing 24/7 contact to a person who can activate the charter.

satellite graphic
Oct 25, 2016NASA Awards Contract for Sustainable Land Imaging Spacecraft

NASA has awarded a delivery order under the Rapid Spacecraft Acquisition III (Rapid III) contract to Orbital Sciences Corporation of Dulles, Virginia, known publicly as Orbital ATK, for the Landsat 9 spacecraft.

Landsat 2 WBVTR
Oct 11, 2016Imaging the Past

Today, we are getting richer and more plentiful information about Earth’s land surface than ever before. But amid all of this modern Earth observing splendor, one truism remains: No sensor can image the past.

Landsat 8 Enhancements Detailed in Journal Special Issue
Oct 6, 2016Landsat 8 Enhancements Detailed in Journal Special Issue

A special issue of the journal Remote Sensing of Environment details the improved capabilities and mission role of Landsat 8.

Rhode Island gypsy moth damage
Oct 5, 2016New Satellite View of Gypsy Moth Damage in New England

Valerie Pasquarella, a postdoctoral fellow with the University of Massachusetts Amherst’s Northeast Climate Science Center, recently released a series of new maps showing the magnitude and extent of damage from the current gypsy moth outbreak in [...]

3 Landsat Images Provided to the Disaster Charter, Sept. 2016
Sep 30, 20163 Landsat Images Provided to the Disaster Charter, Sept. 2016

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

climate change data as art
Sep 30, 2016Landsat, Art, and a Glacier’s Perspective

Glaciologist and prolific AGU blogger, Mauri Pelto, regularly publishes posts about changing glaciers around the globe on his "From a Glacier's Perspective" blog. In many cases, Landsat data informs his posts.

Joe Morrison
Sep 26, 2016#Landsaturated

Government agencies, research universities, independent hackers, coding bootcamp grads, do-good dev shops, swarms of startups, and multi-billion dollar defense contractors are all furiously building Landsat Viewers.

Curtis Woodcock
Sep 21, 2016USGS-NASA Pecora Award Recognizes Excellence in Earth Observation

A longtime innovator in space-based Earth observation at Boston University and a team that has paved the way for the next generation of satellite precipitation observations have both been honored with the 2016 William T. Pecora Award for [...]

Stewart Udall
Sep 21, 2016A Vision to Observe Earth

Fifty years ago, on September 21, 1966, Secretary of the Interior Stewart Udall announced his vision to create “a program aimed at gathering facts about the natural resources of the earth from earth-orbiting satellites.”

global surface water map
Sep 1, 2016Tracking Surface Water Changes Over the Past 30 Years

The world has gained 115,000 km2 of water and 173,000 km2 of land over the past 30 years.

Landsat 9
Aug 29, 2016Landsat 9 Passes Mission Milestone

Landsat 9 passed one of its important reviews: "Key Decision Point B (KDP-B)" on August 17.

WOfS map of Australia
Aug 26, 2016Why Science Team Member Leo Lymburner Uses Landsat

Australia turned to Landsat. At Geoscience Australia, Landsat 8 Science Team member Leo Lymburner works with the flood mapping team headed by Norman Mueller that conceived of the Water Observations from Space project, or WOfS.

James Bridle
Aug 25, 2016James Bridle’s Landsat-Based Art Featured at MoMA

James Bridle, a British artist and writer based in Athens, Greece, has created two art pieces that revolve around Landsat data.

fisheye view of field team
Aug 24, 2016Linking Field and Space-Based Observations

A key component of the research is our ability to connect what we see on the ground with what we see from the sky via satellite imagery.

Lachlan Hurst
Aug 23, 2016ObservedEarth: A Talk with its Creator

Thanks to a software developer in Australia you can now easily browse through Landsat 8 images on your smartphone.

Landsat science team
Aug 19, 2016Presentations from 2016 Summer Science Team Meeting

USGS has made all Science Team presentations from the Summer 2016 meeting held in Brookings, South Dakota available for download.

Spartina grass on Sapelo Island
Aug 15, 2016Landsat Reveals Serious Decline in Georgia Salt Marsh Health

Scientists at the University of Georgia’s Marine Institute at Sapelo Island have found that the amount of vegetation along the Georgia coast has declined significantly in the last 30 years, spurring concerns about the overall health of marshland [...]

Landsat Image Provided to International Charter, July 2016
Jul 31, 2016Landsat Image Provided to International Charter, July 2016

This month, one Landsat scene was ingested by the USGS Hazard Data Distribution System to provide data for Charter activations.

Jhabvala and La
Jul 28, 2016Following the Trail of TIRS Technology onto a CapSat

An advanced photodetector camera that traces its heritage to one now flying on Landsat 8 is being studied as a potential payload on a conceptual satellite (CapSat) system purposely designed to take advantage of the expected boom in [...]

trees killed by pine beetles
Jul 19, 2016Landsat—The Watchman that Never Sleeps

In western North America, mountain pine beetles infest and ravage thousands of acres of forest lands. Landsat satellites bear witness to the onslaught in a way that neither humans nor most other satellites can.

ducks
Jul 19, 2016Land Cover Matters: An Avian Flu Researcher Talks Landsat

We recently spoke with veterinary epidemiologist Todd Kelman from the University of Davis, California about his avian flu research. Todd has incorporated Landsat data into his research and we wanted to know more.

Mike Wulder
Jul 12, 2016Landsat & Lasers: Your Job is to Monitor 860 Million Acres of Forest, Go!

Landsat Science Team member, Mike Wulder, spoke with the International Boreal Forest Research Association last year during their May 2015 conference in Rovaniemi, Finland.

14 Landsat Images Provided to International Charter, June 2016
Jun 30, 201614 Landsat Images Provided to International Charter, June 2016

These maps, provided to responders for free, often show where the damage is and where crisis victims are, allowing responders to plan and execute relief support.

Collaroy
Jun 30, 2016Monitoring Coastline Change with Landsat

Q & A with John Trinder, a Professor Emeritus from the University of New South Wales, about using Landsat data to monitor coastal change.

NASA Shareable on Google Maps' Landsat update
Jun 29, 2016A Cloud-Free Makeover of Google Maps Courtesy of Landsat 8

Google Maps Blog announced on June 26, 2016 that Google Maps and Google Earth have a new cloud-free mosaic based on Landsat 8 data.

wheat
Jun 27, 2016Agriculture: The View From Space

The Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations published an audio article about using geospatial data, including Landsat, to monitor would agriculture on soundcloud.

drawing of Restore-L and Landsat 7
Jun 23, 2016Restore-L Mission to Demonstrate Technology by Refueling Landsat 7

NASA moved forward with plans to execute the ambitious Restore-L mission, an endeavor to launch a robotic spacecraft in 2020 to refuel a live satellite. The current candidate client for this venture is USGS-operated Landsat 7.

Mike Mackowski
Jun 22, 2016Maker of a Miniature Landsat 8

We asked Mike what inspired him to create the miniature Landsat 8 and found out that making model spacecraft has been a lifetime hobby for him.

Flying High: Landsat 8 Sees the International Space Station
Jun 22, 2016Flying High: Landsat 8 Sees the International Space Station

We are used to seeing photographs captured by the International Space Station, but on June 19, 2016 Landsat 8 caught a glimpse of the station itself.

Sierra Nevada Snowpack Not Likely To Recover from Drought Until 2019
Jun 21, 2016Sierra Nevada Snowpack Not Likely To Recover from Drought Until 2019

Even with this winter’s strong El Niño, the Sierra Nevada snowpack will likely take until 2019 to return to pre-drought levels, according to new research.

NASA researchers in the field
Jun 2, 2016Details of a Greening Arctic

The northern reaches of North America are getting greener, according to a NASA study that provides the most detailed look yet at plant life across Alaska and Canada. In a changing climate, almost a third of the land cover – much of it Arctic [...]

west Antarctica
Jun 1, 2016Antarctic Coastline Images Reveal Four Decades of Ice Loss to Ocean

A study of images along 2000 kilometers of West Antarctica’s coastline has shown the loss of about 1000 square kilometers of ice – an area equivalent to the city of Berlin – over the past 40 years.

12 Landsat Images Provided to International Charter, May 2016
May 31, 201612 Landsat Images Provided to International Charter, May 2016

The International Charter is a system that supplies free satellite imagery to emergency responders anywhere in the world. The Charter concept is this: a single phone number is made available to authorized parties providing 24/7 contact to a [...]

Thirsting for Equitable Water Distribution, Australia Turns to Landsat
May 25, 2016Thirsting for Equitable Water Distribution, Australia Turns to Landsat

Since record keeping began in 1860, no period has been drier for southeastern Australia than the decade-long Millennium Drought. The lack of rain between 1997 and 2009 led to livestock losses, crop failures, and percentage drops in the Australian GDP.

dead trees in the Sierra Nevadas
May 20, 2016Decades of Foothill Forest Growth in Sierra Nevada Mountains Erased Due to California’s Extreme Drought

Analyzing a three-decade record of vegetation cover change from the Landsat to compare previous controls on Sierra Nevada forest growth rates and effects of recent fluctuations in water availability since the mid-1980s.

Trees burned by the Summit Fire
May 19, 2016Landsat Data Show Rapid Recovery for Some Forests in Santa Cruz Mountains Despite Drought

NASA and the U.S. Geological Survey’s Landsat satellite images over the past three decades showed that the severe drought periods recorded since the 1980s have not slowed rapid tree and shrub growth, especially on steep slopes burned recently by [...]

Thermal Infrared Sensor-2 Instrument Cryocooler Contract Awarded for Landsat 9
May 17, 2016Thermal Infrared Sensor-2 Instrument Cryocooler Contract Awarded for Landsat 9

NASA has awarded a sole source contract to Ball Aerospace and Technology Corporation of Boulder, Colorado, for the Thermal Infrared Sensor-2 (TIRS-2) instrument Cryocooler for Landsat 9.

bird
May 16, 2016Landsat Helps Feed Tired And Hungry Birds

The BirdReturns program, created by The Nature Conservancy of California, is an effort to provide "pop-up habitats" for some of the millions of shorebirds, such as sandpipers and plovers, that migrate each year from their summer breeding grounds [...]

Tom Loveland
May 11, 2016What’s the Big Idea? — Charting Change from the Skies

Tom Loveland, research scientist with the USGS Earth Resources Observation and Science Center, explains how he uses data — both past and present — to help scientists, natural resource managers, and the public better understand how the face of [...]

19 Landsat Images Provided to International Charter, April 2016
Apr 30, 201619 Landsat Images Provided to International Charter, April 2016

The Charter concept is this: a single phone number is made available to authorized parties providing 24/7 contact to a person who can activate the charter. Once activated, a project manager takes charge.

irrigation photo
Apr 29, 2016Mapping Water Use: Landsat and America’s Water Resources

Water is one of our nation’s most important natural resources, one that’s long been considered inexhaustible. Yet changes in land use, climate, and population demographics are placing unprecedented demands on America’s water supplies. As [...]

Top 40 NASA Spin-offs
Apr 28, 2016Landsat Featured Among Top 40 NASA Spin-offs

For its fortieth anniversary, the NASA Tech Briefs publication published an article about the top 40 NASA Spin-offs of the last four decades. Landsat data is directly involved in three of the featured technologies.

tornado destruction
Apr 27, 2016April 27, 2011–Five Years Later: A Satellite Imagery Perspective

On April 27, 2011, a severe weather outbreak occurred across the southeastern United States, resulting in 199 tornadoes across the region and over 300 fatalities.