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Landsat Next: A 26-band 10m resolution Landsat 10


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Following the successful launch of Landsat 8 and during the development of Landsat 9, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) and NASA assembled a team of experts from within both agencies for a Joint Agency Sustainable Land Imaging Architecture Study Team to evaluate how to inform an acquisition strategy for a follow-on mission that would best satisfy the diverse and evolving user needs collect by the USGS.

The highest-recommended architecture was a small constellation of “superspectral” space-based sensors that would improve the spectral, spatial, and temporal capabilities. Landsat Next data would be sufficiently consistent with data from the earlier Landsat missions to permit studies of land cover and land use change over multi-decadal period.

Landsat Next Defined

Landsat Next will be a constellation of three observatories sent into orbit on the same launch vehicle, which will provide an improved temporal revisit for monitoring dynamic land and water surfaces such as vegetation, wildfire burns, reservoirs and waterways, coastal and wetland regions, glaciers, and dynamic ice sheets.

Landsats 8 and 9 measure 11 spectral bands from the visible to thermal infrared wavelengths. Landsat Next will have 26 bands; this includes refined versions of the 11 Landsat “heritage” bands, five bands with similar spatial and spectral characteristics to the European Space Agency’s Copernicus Sentinel-2 bands to allow easier merging of data products, and ten new spectral bands to support emerging Landsat applications.



With these improvements, Landsat Next will collect on average about 20 times more data than its predecessor, Landsat 9, and continue to provide free and open data access for all users.


The Landsat Next mission successfully passed Key Decision Point A (KDP-A) and is currently in Phase A. Upcoming project studies will complete the mission design, data management and compression approaches, flight instrument requirements and architecture, and spacecraft resource definition.

The mission is planned to launch in late 2030.



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