Landsat Data Continuity Mission Launched

On February 11th 2013 the Landsat Earth Observation Mission was extended with the launch of the Landsat Continuity Mission on an Atlas V rocket. Once the satellite is in position and operational it will be renamed to Landsat 8. It will be the seventh satellite in the “Landsat” series which started with Landsat 7 (Originally called Earth Resources Technology Satellite)  launched in 1972.

Landsat has made contributions to the scientific community commercial sectors in a range of ways that include agriculture, ecology, water resources, natural hazards, deforestation, spread of disease,  web-mapping and many others.

Aside from all the scientific applications Landsat data has, it has also led to the discovery of  hidden archaeological sites, new lands, features and even species on the Earth’s surface. For example a never before recorded reef was discovered in the Indian Ocean and an island off the coast of Labrador, Canada. In tribute to it’s discoverer, the island was named Landsat island.

Scantherma_AtlasV_Landsat8-liftoff

Atlas V rocket lifting off with the Landsat_Data_Continuity_Mission (Landsat 8) satellite on board.

Landsat 8 satellite sitting inside its protective housing that will be mounted atop the Atlas V rocket.

Landsat 8 satellite sitting inside its protective housing that will be mounted atop the Atlas V rocket.