Minimize OLI & TIRS

To help users familiarise themselves with the Landsat OLI and TIRS instruments, and its science data products, the Landsat 8 Data Users Handbook is available online.

The OLI & TIRS menu to your right provides information concerning the SPPA activities for these instruments.

A brief description of the instruments, their operations and main mission highlights are available in the sections below:

Sensor Description   |    Sensor Modes   |    Mission Operations Overview     
Minimize OLI Sensor Description

The Landsat Operational Land Imager (OLI) uses a technological approach demonstrated by the Advanced Land Imager (ALI) sensor flown on NASA's experimental EO-1 satellite launched November 21 2000.

OLI provides two new spectral bands in respect to the Landsat 7 ETM+ instrument, one tailored especially for detecting cirrus clouds (band 9, new Near Infra-Red (NIR) band) and the other for coastal zone observations (band 1, new deep blue visible channel). It measures in the visible, NIR, and Shortwave Infra-Red (SWIR) portions of the electromagnetic spectrum and offers 15 metre panchromatic, and 30 metre multi-spectral spatial resolution.

More detailed information can be found on the ESA OLI and NASA OLI, Requirements, Design, Pre-launch performance and Relative Spectral Response pages.

Detailed information on the Landsat 8 spacecraft can be found here.

Landsat 8 image of the Guinea-Bissau and the Bissagos Islands, acquired 3 May 2013. Image credits: USGS/ESA
Minimize TIRS Sensor Description

The Landsat Thermal Infra-Red Scanner (TIRS) provides two more narrow spectral bands in the Thermal (originally covered by a single band in the previous TM and ETM+ sensors) and is a QWIP (Quantum Well Infra-Red Photodetector) based instrument intended to supplement the observations of the OLI instrument.

The TIRS instrument is a thermal imager operating in the pushbroom mode with two Infra-Red channels: 10.8 µm and 12 µm. The two spectral bands are achieved through interference filters that cover the FPA (Focal Plane Assembly). The pushbroom implementation increases the system sensitivity by allowing longer integration times than whiskbroom sensors. The two channels allow the use of the "split-window" technique to aid in distinguishing between the temperature of the Earth's surface and that of the atmosphere.

More detailed information can be found on the ESA TIRS and NASA TIRS, Requirements, Design and Relative Spectral Response pages.