Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center


At the USGS EROS Center, we study land change and produce land change data products used by researchers, resource managers, and policy makers across the nation and around the world. We also operate the Landsat satellite program with NASA, and maintain the largest civilian collection of images of the Earth’s land surface in existence, including tens of millions of satellite images. 

What's New at EROS?


Eyes on Earth is a podcast covering a range of topics on remote sensing, satellite operations, and the science of Earth observation. Watch for new episodes every two weeks.

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Image of the Week

Image of the Week

The waves of sugar cane that once defined the Hawaiian island landscape of Maui, have slowly given way to non-native annual grasses in recent decades. Those grasses have become a fire hazard along the way. 

Maui Fires


Date published: January 13, 2021

Atlas displays beauty, variety, and value of Landsat water images

Landsat satellites exist to provide information—millions of images’ worth of information—about the Earth’s surface.

Date published: January 12, 2021

Landsat Science Team's Crystal Schaaf Discusses Albedo, Its Importance, and How It Can Affect Climate

One of the interesting fields in remote sensing science is the study of albedo, a term derived from the Latin word for whiteness. Albedo is another name for reflectivity. The albedo of a surface determines how much sunlight will be absorbed and warm the surface compared to another surface that reflects most of the light and does not change temperature.

Date published: January 5, 2021

First Orbital Space Flight Operations Coming to EROS, South Dakota

South Dakota’s first foray into orbital space flight operations is unfolding at the Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center near Sioux Falls as work begins there on a backup Landsat Multi-Satellite Operations Center (bLMOC).


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Year Published: 2021

Landsat collection 2

Landsat Collections ensure that all Landsat Level-1 data are consistently calibrated and processed and retain traceability of data quality provenance. Landsat Collection 2 introduces improvements that harness recent advancements in data processing, algorithm development, data access, and distribution capabilities. Collection 2 includes Landsat...

U.S. Geological Survey, 2021, Landsat Collection 2 (ver. 1.1, January 15, 2021): U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2021–3002, 4 p.,

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Year Published: 2021

Investigation of land surface phenology detections in shrublands using multiple scale satellite data

Shrublands occupy about 13% of the global land surface, contain about one-third of the biodiversity, store about half of the global terrestrial carbon, and provide many ecosystem services to a large amount of world's human population and livestock. Because phenology is a sensitive indicator of the response of shrubland ecosystems to climate change...

Peng, Dailiang; Wang, Yan; Xian, George Z.; Huete, Alfredo R; Huang, Wenjiang; Shen, Miaogen; Wang, Fumin; Yu, Le; Liu, Liangyun; Xie, Qiaoyun; Liu, Lingling; Zhang, Xiaoyang

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Year Published: 2020

Alaska and Landsat

Alaska’s landscapes are changing at a more rapid rate than those of the lower 48. Its large size makes the collection of aerial surveys—a biannual occurrence for the conterminous United States—cost-prohibitive. That means the Landsat series of land imaging satellites offer the only publicly available, up-to-date imagery of land conditions for...

U.S. Geological Survey, 2020, Alaska and Landsat: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2020–3068, 2 p.,