Last Update: 11/19/02
One of the key responsibilities of NASA's Earth Science Office is to ensure the continuity of future Landsat data. The New Millennium Program's (NMP) first Earth Observing (EO-1) flight , managed by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), has validated revolutionary technologies contributing to the reduction in cost and increased capabilities for future land imaging missions.
Three revolutionary land imaging instruments on EO-1 are collecting multispectral and hyperspectral scenes over the course of its mission in coordination with the Enhanced Thematic Mapper (ETM+) on Landsat 7. Breakthrough technologies in lightweight materials, high performance integrated detector arrays and precision spectrometers have been demonstrated in these instruments. Detailed comparisons of the EO-1 and ETM+ images have been carried out to validate these instruments for follow-on missions.
Future NASA spacecraft will be an order of magnitude smaller and lighter than current versions. The EO-1 mission has also provided the on-orbit demonstration and validation of several spacecraft technologies to enable this transition. Key technology advances in communications, power, propulsion, thermal and data storage are also included on the EO-1 mission.
Earth Observing-1 (EO-1) is the first satellite in NASA's New Millennium Program Earth Observing series. The EO-1 mission has developed and validated instruments and technologies for space-based Earth observations with unique spatial, spectral and temporal characteristics not previously available.
EO-1's primary focus is to develop and test a set of advanced technology land imaging instruments. However, many other key technologies are part of the mission and will have wide ranging applications to future land imaging missions in particular and future satellites in general.
EO-1 has been inserted into an orbit flying in formation with the Landsat 7 satellite taking a series of the same images. Comparison of these "paired scene" images will be one means to evaluate EO-1's land imaging instruments.
EO-1's smaller, cheaper and more capable spacecraft, instruments and technologies will set the pace for future Earth Science missions in the New Millennium.
EO-1 was launched on a Delta 7320 from Vandenberg Air Force Base on November 21, 2000. It was inserted into a 705 km circular, sun-synchronous orbit at a 98.7 degrees inclination such that it was flying in formation 1 minute behind Landsat 7 in the same ground track and maintaining the separation within 2 seconds. This close separation has enabled EO-1 to observe the same ground location (scene) through the same atmospheric region so that paired scene comparisons between the two satellites can be made.
Both Landsat 7 and EO-1 image the same ground areas (scenes). All three of the EO-1 land imaging instruments view all or subsegments of the Landsat 7 swath. Reflected light from the ground is imaged onto the focal plane of each instrument. Each of the imaging instruments has unique filtering methods for passing light in only specific spectral bands. Bands are selected to best look for specific surface features or land characteristics based on scientific or commercial applications.
EO-1 Mission Technology Transfer Manager
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
Phone: (301) 286-8146
Fax: (301) 286-1736