25 Years of Landsat
The 'workhorse' Landsat 5 satellite was launched on 1 March, 1984, and over two decades later it continues to provide important observations of the landmass of the planet.
When Landsat 5 was launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, expectations were for two years of effective operations, with a goal of three years of data collections. Instead, after over 100,000 orbits and the acquisition of over 29 million images, Landsat 5 continued to operate successfully twenty years later. This remarkable achievement established a record for reliability in the civilian space fleet.
29 years of operation ended on 5 June 2013, when the ageing satellite was finally decommissioned. The satellite was honoured with an entry in the Guinness Book of Records for being the longest operational Earth observing satellite.
In honour of the twenty year anniversary in 2004, our Landsat Showcase was created to present some of the images from this successful satellite and show how some of the world's cities have changed and developed through the duration of the mission. This demonstrates how the Landsat series provides records of a changing world.
Latest Landsat Showcase
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