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Heritage Missions

ESA's Heritage missions programme preserves 30 years of historical data from more than 45 satellite missions that are no longer operational.

  • Mission - Heritage Missions

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    Envisat

    Envisat was ESA's successor to ERS. Envisat carried ten instruments aboard for a wide range of Earth observing fields. The mission was operational from 2002 to 2012.

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    ERS

    The ERS programme was composed of two missions, ERS-1 and ERS-2, which together observed the Earth for 20 years, from 1991 to 2011.

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    MOS-1/1B

    MOS-1 and 1B, Japan’s first marine observation satellites, were designed to monitor ocean currents, sea surface temperature, atmospheric water vapour, ocean chlorophyll levels, precipitation, and land vegetation.

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    IRS-1C and IRS-1D

    The Indian Remote Sensing satellites IRS-1C and IRS-1D were identical Earth-imaging satellites operated by the Indian Space Research Organisation.

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    Landsat Series

    The Landsat Series is the world's longest running system of satellites for moderate-resolution optical remote sensing for land, coastal areas and shallow waters.

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    RADARSAT

    The RADARSAT programme consists of a pair of remote sensing satellites from the Canadian Space Agency (CSA).

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    NOAA POES

    NOAA's AVHRR sensor is carried on the POES mission, a constellation of polar orbiting weather satellites.

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    Landsat-1 to Landsat-3

    The Landsat-1 to 3 satellites were the first in the United States' Landsat programme, dedicated to monitoring the Earth's land mass.

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    GEOSAT

    The GEOSAT series consists of GEOSAT-1 and GEOSAT-2 missions. They are Earth imaging satellites. GEOSAT-2, a high resolution satellite, became the first European fully-private satellite capable of providing sub-metric multi-spectral imagery.

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    SPOT

    The SPOT (from French "Satellite pour l'Observation de la Terre") series of missions has been supplying high-resolution, wide-area optical imagery since 1986.

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    SPOT 7

    SPOT 7 (also known as Azersky), like all of the other SPOT missions, was aimed at supplying high-resolution, wide-area optical imagery.

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    SPOT 5

    SPOT 5, like all the SPOT missions, was aimed at supplying high-resolution, wide-area optical imagery.

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    SPOT 4

    SPOT 4, like all the SPOT missions, was aimed at supplying high-resolution, wide-area optical imagery.

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    SPOT 3

    SPOT 3, like all the SPOT missions, was aimed at supplying high-resolution, wide-area optical imagery.

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    SPOT 2

    SPOT 2, like all the SPOT missions, was aimed at supplying high-resolution, wide-area optical imagery.

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    SPOT 1

    SPOT 1 was designed to improve the knowledge and management of Earth's resources, detecting and forecasting phenomena involving climatology and oceanography, and monitoring human activities and natural phenomena.

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    RapidEye

    Together, the five RapidEye satellites were capable of collecting over 4 million square kilometres of 5 m resolution, 5-band colour imagery every day.

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    QuickBird-2

    QuickBird-2 was an Earth-imaging satellite. When launched in 2001, it was then the highest resolution commercial satellite.

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    KOMPSAT-2

    KOMPSAT-2 (Korea Multi-Purpose Satellite-2), also known as Arirang-2, was developed by KARI (Korea Aerospace Research Institute) to continue the observation programme of the KOMPSAT-1 mission.

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    JERS-1

    The overall objectives of JERS-1 (Japanese Earth Resources Satellite) were the generation of global data sets with SAR and OPS sensors aimed at surveying resources, establishing an integrated Earth observation system