Landsat 8: Increased acquisition rates with up to 700 scenes per day

Granite outcrops in Yosemite National Park captured by Landsat 8 on April 2014

The United States Earth Observation satellite Landsat 8 has recently seen a high increase in acquisition rates. On average, 700 scenes per day have been acquired (compared to 550 images per day before June 2014). 

Publishing Date: 

Tue, 29/07/2014 - 15:01

Japan: Full scale disaster management system with Quasi-Zenith Satellites

The orbit of the Quasi-Zenith Satellite above Japan

The Japanese national newspaper Yomiuri Shimbun reported on 22 July 2014 that a full-scale operation of Quasi-Zenith satellites is projected to start in 2018, after that a first one, Michibiki, was launched in September 2010.


Publishing Date: 

Tue, 29/07/2014 - 11:31

China and Venezuela: Agreement for new Earth Observation satellite

Rendition of VRSS-1 satellite, launched in September 2012

On 22 July 2014, Xinhua News Agency, the state press agency of the People's Republic of China, annouced that China and Venezuela agreed on the in-orbit delivery of a remote sensing satellite, VRSS-1.

China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) will be the major contractor of the project, expanding satellite technology transfer to Venezuela.

Publishing Date: 

Fri, 25/07/2014 - 09:59

Japan: First Images of Daichi-2 released

Aerial view of Nishinoshima island, part of the Ogasawara Islands.

On 24 May 2014, Japan's Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) launched their Advanced Land Observing Satellite-2 "Daichi-2" (ALOS-2) from the Tanegashima Space Center.

Daichi-2 has a radar that can recognize objects about three meters in size and can observe land even at night or when it is raining. As a result, the satellite is expected to help disaster responders, as it can fly over Japan twice a day. The capabilities of Daichi-2 were shown through the first data obtained from the satellite, which JAXA recently released.


Publishing Date: 

Thu, 03/07/2014 - 14:48

Algerian Space Agency tracks land use change with Alsat-2A

Diachronic analysis of urban and environmental development of El Kala, Algeria.

UN-SPIDER’s Regional Support Office in Algeria, the Algerian Space Agency, has recently published the results of bi-phase satellite observations on the towns of El Tarf and El Kala and their surroundings. The goal was to monitor urban sprawl and land use changes that might impact on the environment.


Publishing Date: 

Mon, 30/06/2014 - 09:25

Referenced UN-SPIDER Regional Support Office: 

Russia: Launch of GLONASS-M55 satellite into orbit

Launch of GLONASS-M55 satellite into orbit

On 14 June 2014, Russia launched their GLONASS M55 navigation satellite via a Soyuz launch vehicle, lifting off at 1:16 p.m. EDT from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome.

Within a few weeks, this new satellite will become operational and it will transmit an experimental navigation signal in the L3 frequency band, in addition to the standard L1 and L2 signals. GLONASS M55 was manufactured by ISS Reshetnev: it has a launch mass of 1,415kg (3,100 lbs) and possesses a seven year life expectancy on orbit.

Publishing Date: 

Wed, 18/06/2014 - 10:33

United Nations/Mexico Symposium on Basic Space Technology on the theme "Making Space Technology Accessible and Affordable"

This is event is available for participation on an ongoing basis

The technical sessions to be included in the Symposium are as follows:






20/10/2014 to 23/10/2014

Registration Deadline: 

Thu, 10/07/2014

Event Organisers: 

United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA)

Center for Scientific Research and Higher Education (CICESE)

Mexican Space Agency

Language of event: 


United States: Half of the country experiencing drought

Scientists from the US created this map of dought areas

In early May 2014, the United States National Drought Center, in cooperation with the United States Department of Agriculture, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln developed a map, which shows the extended area affected by high temperatures and subsequent droughts in the United States.

Publishing Date: 

Mon, 19/05/2014 - 09:27

China: Fengyun III satellite is operational

satellite data shows heat wave in China

The China Meteorological Administration (CMA) announced that the countries’ third Fengyun-III satellite became operational on Monday, 5 May. The satellite was launched on 23 September last year.

The third Fengyun-III satellite is a polar orbiting meteorological satellite, which together with the second Fengyun-III satellite will build a network of constant 3D, multiple spectrum and remote-sensing observation of the Earth.

Publishing Date: 

Thu, 08/05/2014 - 11:16

NASA tracks tropical Cyclone Jack to its end

satellite tracks precipitation and rainfall rates

Tropical Cyclone Jack lost power yesterday, 22 April 2014, and is no longer on the scale of tropical cyclones. However, NASA’s TRMM satellite took one last look at the storm yesterday.

The TRMM satellite is co-managed by NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency JAXA. The satellite mission flew twice over the storm and delivered data about rainfall and precipitation rates. The TRMM’s Microwave Imager and Precipitation Radar were used to create this image.

Publishing Date: 

Wed, 23/04/2014 - 11:55


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