Project Description
In 1992, the US Congress authorized the procurement, launch and
operation of a new Landsat satellite. This new system, Landsat 7, was
launched on April 15, 1999. It is the latest in a series of Landsat
earth observation satellites dating back to 1972. The twenty-nine year
record of data acquired by the Landsat satellites constitutes the
longest continuous record of the earth's continental
surfaces. Preservation of the existing record and continuation of the
Landsat capability were identified in the law as critical to land
surface monitoring and global change research.

Landsat 7 has a unique and essential role in the realm of earth
observing satellites in orbit. No other earth observing system matches
Landsat's combination of synoptic coverage, high spatial resolution,
spectral range and radiometric calibration. In addition, the Landsat
Program is committed to provide Landsat digital data to the user
community in greater quantities, more quickly and at lower cost than
at any previous time in the history of the program.

The Landsat 7 spacecraft was built by Lockheed Martin, Valley Forge,
Pennsylvania. The ETM+ instrument is a product of Hughes Santa Barbara
Remote Sensing. Construction of both was managed through contracts
between the manufacturers and the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center,
Greenbelt, Maryland.

The Landsat Program, as defined by Congress in 1992 and amended by
Presidential Decision Directive/NSTC-3 in May, 1994, was managed
cooperatively by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
(NASA), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA),
and the USGS. NASA was responsibility for construction of the
spacecraft and instrument. The Landsat Program is part of the NASA's
global change initiative - the Earth Observing System, administered by
the NASA Office of Mission to Planet Earth. NOAA no longer
participates in the Landsat 7 program. Landsat 7 is now operated by
USGS. Data processing, archiving and distribution is performed by
USGS. These functions will be executed in coordination with the EDC
Distributed Active Archive Center (EDC DAAC) of NASA's Earth Observing
System Data and Information System (EOSDIS) at EDC.

For more information on Landsat and Landsat 7, see:
http://landsat.gsfc.nasa.gov/
and
http://landsat7.usgs.gov/index.php

For more information on the Earth Observing System (EOS), see:
http://eospso.gsfc.nasa.gov/