A Legacy Continues with Landsat 9 Launch

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Detailed Description

Landsat 9 is a partnership between NASA and USGS. The satellite will continue the Landsat program’s mission to capture repeat snapshots of Earth to monitor, understand and manage natural resources.


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Length: 00:02:14

Location Taken: US

Video Credits

Some content used with permission from the Goddard Space Center.


The Landsat series of satellites have been watching our planet for nearly 50 years, capturing changes on land and making that information freely available to users around the world.

On September 27, 2021,Landsat 9 will launch from the Vandenberg Space Force Base located in Lompoc, California. It will enter Landsat 7’s current orbit and largely replicate Landsat 8’s capabilities to provide a seamless continuation of data, ending its 22-year journey observation of Earth.

Building upon the partnership with NASA, the USGS will operate and distribute the data for the 7-year estimated service life of Landsat 9.

Fitted with updated advanced sensors, Landsat 9 is equipped with the Operational Land Imager 2, which will capture images of Earth in visible, near infrared and shortwave-infrared light, and the Thermal Infrared Sensor 2, which will measure the heat (or brightness) of Earth’s surfaces.

Capturing nearly 1,500 new scenes a day to support the USGS Landsat archive. Landsat 9, like its predecessor, will also image all global landmasses and nearshore coastal regions, which were not routinely collected prior to Landsat 8.

The Landsat mission is especially useful for teasing out land changes that could contribute to climate change, like deforestation, and those that are caused by climate change, like intense wildfire burn scars.

The impacts of climate change will continue to cause changes in vegetation, wildfires, and species distributions. The Landsat satellites provides access to a suite of products in near real time to helping to look at the past, present, and future.