Minimize SkySat
Web Content Image

The SkySat constellation is the Very High Resolution component of Planet's satellite image portfolio.

Skysat-A and B generation satellites were launched in 2013/14.

The SkySat-C generation satellite is a high-resolution Earth imaging satellite, first launched in 2016. Eleven are currently in orbit, all collecting thousands of square kilometres of imagery. Each satellite is 3-axis stabilised and agile enough to slew between different targets of interest. Each satellite has four thrusters for orbital control, along with four reaction wheels and three magnetic torquers for attitude control.

All SkySats contain Cassegrain telescopes with a focal length of 3.6m, with three 5.5 megapixel CMOS imaging detectors making up the focal plane.

Minimize Mission News

PlanetScope and SkySat data familiarisation phase for the Third Party Missions programme

04 September 2018

ESA and Planet are pleased to announce the opportunity to freely access, up to the end of the year, PlanetScope and SkySat data over three European demonstration sites: Demmin, Wilhelmshaven and Berlin.

Minimize Mission Facts and Figures

Mission details

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 (reference)

500 km

Repeat Cycle

Sub-daily for the constellation
4 - 5 days for a single SkySat satellite
*Reference altitude 500 km

Swath width

8 km at nadir (SkySat-1 to -2)
6.6 km at nadir (SkySat-3 to -13)
*Reference altitude 500 km

Equator Crossing Time

10:30 (SkySat-3 to -7)
13:00 (SkySat-1 to -2)
13:30 (SkySat-8 to -13)

Number of satellites

13

SkySat Sensor Specification

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
Green
Red
NIR
PAN

450 – 515 nm
515 – 595 nm
605 – 695 nm
740 – 900 nm
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

Single Camera Frame Size

3.2 km x 1.4 km (approximate)

Maximum Image Strip length

200 km

Revisit Time

sub-daily

Image Capture Capacity

500k km² /day

Camera Dynamic Range

12-bit

Minimize SkySat Products

Planet offer the following products for this mission:

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 colour-corrected (using a colour curve) 3-band RGB Imagery.

Level 3B

SkySat Pansharpened Multispectral Ortho Scene

The SkySat Pansharpened Multispectral Scene product is orthorectified, pansharpened, and colour-corrected (using a colour 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