GeoEye imaging satellite launched

The highest resolution commercial Earth imaging satellite to-date, GeoEye-1, was launched over the weekend on board a Delta-II rocket.

The highest resolution commercial Earth imaging satellite to date, the GeoEye-1, was launched over the weekend on a Delta-II rocket that carried the Google logo alongside the GeoEye logo on its side.

The satellite was built as part of the U.S. National Geospatial Agency's NextView program under which the agency shared the costs of engineering, construction and launch of new generation satellites to support the commercial satellite imaging industry. For the GeoEye-1 satellite the agency funded about US$237 million of the total $502 million price tag. The agency has also committed to buying imaging data from the satellite for at least the first year and a half of operations.

Google will also be buying images taken by the satellite to supplement those it already uses in its Google Earth and Google Maps services.

GeoEye-1, which was launched at 11:51 a.m. Saturday morning, is capable of shooting 41-centimeter black and white images and 1.65 meter color images. The measurements refer to the size of the smallest thing that it can see from its orbit 681 kilometers above the Earth's surface.

U.S. regulations mean the highest resolution images available to commercial customers will be at 50cm, but while not the best the satellite can offer, is still double that of the current best-resolution image available from GeoEye's Ikonos satellite.

In addition to Ikonos, GeoEye also operates the OrbView-2 satellite. A third satellite, OrbView-3, developed technical problems in March last year and was taken out of service.

Dulles, Virginia-based GeoEye will now put the satellite through a series on in-orbit tests before the first images are sold.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martyn Williams

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?