On September 23, 2006 Landsat 5 made its 120,000th orbit around Earth (equating to nearly 3.1 billion miles traveled). Tampa, Florida was one of the locations found on the path of the 120,000th orbit (see image to right).
Landsat 5 was launched in 1984 with a five year design life. Thanks to good engineering and a knowledgeable flight operations team, Landsat 5 is still collecting data as it nears the 23rd anniversary of its launch (March 1). As USGS says on the commemorative poster created for Landsat 5’s 120,000 orbit, Landsat 5 is “the satellite that keeps going and going and going.”
+ Download USGS commemorative poster (1.2 Mb)
The Pale Blue Dot Visualization Challenge—aimed at making Earth observation data accessible to everyone—has officially kicked off.