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Fact Sheet 2010–3026

Landsat: A Global Land-Imaging Project

By Rachel Headley

Thumbnail of and link to report PDF (1.1 MB)


Across nearly four decades since 1972, Landsat satellites continuously have acquired space-based images of the Earth’s land surface, coastal shallows, and coral reefs. The Landsat Program, a joint effort of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), was established to routinely gather land imagery from space; consequently, NASA develops remote-sensing instruments and spacecraft, then launches and validates the satellites. The USGS then assumes ownership and operation of the satellites, in addition to managing all ground-data reception, archiving, product generation, and distribution. The result of this program is a visible, long-term record of natural and human-induced changes on the global landscape.

First posted May 11, 2010

For additional information contact:
U.S. Geological Survey
Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center
47914 252nd Street
Sioux Falls, SD 57198-0001
Phone: 605-594-6151
Fax: 605-594-6589

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Suggested citation:

Headley, Rachel, 2010, Landsat—A global land-imaging project: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2010–3026, 4 p.

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