SkySat

Mission

blue arrow Overview

SkySat is a constellation of high-resolution Earth imaging satellites from the commercial company Planet. SkySat-1 was launched in 2013 and a launch programme has followed.

Mission Parameters
Operator Planet
Date of Launch

SkySat-1: 21 Nov 2013
Skysat-2: 08 Jul 2014
Skysat-3: 22 Sep 2016
Skysat-4 to 7: 16 Sep 2016
Skysat-8 to 13: 31 Oct 2017

Mission Status

Operating nominally

Orbit Type

Sun-synchronous

Orbit Altitude

475-575 km

Equator Crossing Time

10:30 (Current C-Gen satellites, SkySat-3 to -7)
13:00 (SkySat-1 to -2)
13:30 (Block-2 C-Gen satellites, SkySat-8 to -13)

Number of satellites

15


 

This mission is considered a Third Party Mission under evaluation. The evaluation will tackle cal/val activities and assess the products specifications. This analysis will be performed in the framework of the Earthnet Data Assessment Pilot (EDAP). The evaluation will also allow any interested user to investigate the suitability of the data for scientific and R&D activities.”

blue arrow Objectives

The SkySat constellation collects thousands of square kilometres of imagery. Each satellite is three-axis stabilised and agile enough to slew between different targets of interest. 

blue arrow Instruments

SkySat camera

This is a Cassegrain telescope with a focal length of 3.6m, with three 5.5 megapixel CMOS imaging detectors making up the focal plane.

Sensor Parameters
Sensor Type SkySat Satellites have three CMOS Frame Cameras per satellite with Panchromatic and Multispectral halve, which capture overlapping strips. Each of these strips contain overlapping scenes.
Spectral Bands Blue 450 – 515 nm
Green 515 – 595 nm
Red 605 – 695 nm
NIR 740 – 900 nm
PAN 450 - 900 nm

 

Ground Sample Distance (nadir) [SkySat-1, SkySat-2]
Panchromatic: 0.86 m
Multispectral: 1.0 m
[SkySat-3 - SkySat-13]
Panchromatic: 0.72 m
Multispectral: 1.0 m
Swath width

 

8 km at nadir (SkySat-1 to -2)
6.6 km at nadir (SkySat-3 to -13)

Maximum Image Strip length

200 km

Revisit Time

Constellation: sub-daily
Satellite: 4 - 5 days (Reference altitude 500 km)

Image Capture Capacity 400k km² /day

blue arrow Data

blue arrow DATA DESCRIPTION

ESA is offering, for scientific research and application development, access to archive and new tasking data from the SkySat mission upon submission and acceptance of a project proposal. These products are available as part of the Planet imagery offer.

 

ESA will support as many high-quality and innovative projects as possible within the quota limit available, therefore only a limited amount of products can be made available to each project.

 

The following collection is available:

 

blue arrow Product Information

Name Description Product Level
SkySat Basic Scene
Product
The SkySat Basic Scene product includes Analytic and
Panchromatic imagery that is uncalibrated and in a raw
digital number format. The Basic Scene Product is not
radiometrically corrected for atmosphere or for any
geometric distortions inherent in the imaging process.
Level 2B
SkySat Visual Ortho
Scene
The SkySat Visual Ortho Scene product is orthorectified,
pansharpened, and color-corrected (using a color curve)
3-band RGB Imagery.
Level 3B
SkySat Pansharpened
Multispectral Ortho Scene
The SkySat Pansharpened Multispectral Scene product is
orthorectified, pansharpened, and color-corrected
(using a color curve) 4-band BGRN Imagery.
Level 3B
SkySat Analytic DN
Ortho Scene
The SkySat Analytic DN Ortho Scene product is
orthorectified, multispectral data from the SkySat constellation.
The Analytic DN product is an uncalibrated,
digital number imagery product. This product is designed
for a wide variety of applications that require imagery with
an accurate geolocation and cartographic projection.
The product has been processed to remove distortions
caused by terrain. It eliminates the perspective effect on
the ground (not on buildings), restoring the geometry of a
vertical shot. In addition to orthorectification, the imagery
has radiometric corrections applied to correct for any
sensor artifacts. The initial availability does not include
transformation to at-sensor radiance.
Level 3B
SkySat Panchromatic
DN Ortho Scene
The SkySat Panchromatic Ortho Scene product is
orthorectified, panchromatic data from the SkySat constellation.
The Panchromatic DN product is an
uncalibrated, digital number imagery product.
The Panchromatic product has a finer GSD than the Analytic
Product due to NOAA license restrictions, and is useful
for visual interpretation as well as pan-sharpening of
coarser resolution Multispectral data. The initial
availability does not include transformation to at-sensor radiance.
Level 3B
SkySat Analytic
Ortho Scene
Analytic products are calibrated multispectral imagery
products that have been processed to allow analysts to
derive information products for data science and analytics.
The imagery has radiometric corrections
applied to correct for any sensor artifacts and
transformation to top-of-atmosphere radiance.
(product is not available for images acquired before October 2017)
Level 3B
SkySat Ortho
Collect Product
The Ortho Collect product is created by composing
SkySat Ortho Scenes along an imaging strip into
segments typically unifying ~60 SkySat Ortho Scenes.
The product may contain artifacts resulting from the
composing process, particular offsets in areas of stitched
source scenes. In a next version, artifacts caused by
scene misalignment will be hidden by cutlines. This is
particularly important for the appearance of objects in
built-up areas and their accurate extraction.
Level 3B