This is the first step in a phased development process for an advanced, third-generation satellite capable of discerning objects on the Earth’s surface as small as 0.25-meter (9.75 inch) in size. The company expects to contract with a satellite builder in 2008 and launch the satellite approximately three years after work begins under that contract.
GeoEye-2 will be of the same general class as GeoEye-1, but will benefit from significant improvements in capability, including enhanced direct tasking, and the potential to collect imagery of the Earth’s surface at 0.25-meter or 9.75-inch ground resolution. While GeoEye has an operating license from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to build and launch a satellite constellation with this extremely high ground resolution, the final decision regarding GeoEye-2 resolution will be made in response to how best to serve customer requirements, as well as consideration of the current regulatory environment.
Under current licensing constraints, only U.S. Government customers and specifically designated allies have access to imagery at this highest resolution while commercial customers receive imagery at the highest resolution allowed by U.S. regulations, currently 0.5-meter or 19.5 inch ground resolution.
While this contract announcement is for GeoEye-2, GeoEye is nearing the launch of its next-generation commercial satellite imaging system, GeoEye-1, slated for late first quarter or early second quarter 2008 from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. GeoEye-1 will be the world’s highest resolution commercial Earth imaging satellite with the best geospatial accuracy available.
The satellite will be able to discern objects on the ground .41-meter or 16 inches in size or larger. More importantly, GeoEye-1 will be able to locate an object that size to within about nine feet of its true location on the surface of the globe without ground control points. Imagery an be supplied in color or if the customer prefers, in black and white.
GeoEye-1 Satellite Image Gallery
Satellite Imaging Corporation uses advanced image processing techniques from various satellite sensors such as color and panchromatic image data processing, orthorectification, pan sharpening with image data fusion, image enhancements, georeferencing, mosaicing, and color/grayscale balancing and is used in various applications.