DigitalGlobe unveils plans for new spacecraft constellation

DigitalGlobe unveils plans for new spacecraft constellation

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DigitalGlobe unveiled details of the company’s next-generation imaging satellite, WorldView. The new satellite, set to launch no later than 2006, will be the world’s highest resolution commercial imaging satellite with better agility, accuracy and collection capacity than any other known commercial system. The WorldView imaging system will allow DigitalGlobe to substantially expand its imagery product offerings to both commercial and government customers worldwide.

Once launched, WorldView will be the world’s only half-meter resolution commercial imaging satellite, capable of collecting images with 50-centimeter panchromatic resolution and 2.0-meter multispectral resolution. Added spectral diversity will provide the ability to perform precise change detection and mapping. WorldView will incorporate the industry standard four multispectral bands (red, blue, green, near-infrared) and will also include four new bands (coastal, yellow, red edge, and near-infrared 2).

When combined with DigitalGlobe’s existing QuickBird satellite, the company’s imaging constellation will be capable of collecting more than 4.5 times the imagery of any current commercial imaging system. By late 2006, WorldView alone will be capable of collecting up to 500,000 square kilometers (200,000 sq. mi.) per day of half-meter imagery. The satellite will also be equipped with state-of-the-art geo-location accuracy capability and will exhibit stunning agility with rapid targeting and efficient in-track stereo collection.

WorldView’s higher orbit of nearly 800 kilometers will allow the satellite to revisit collection areas more frequently, letting customers repeat their image acquisitions about once a day. Other impressive capabilities of the WorldView system include more efficient image processing systems and multi-satellite collection planning, shorter tasking timelines, and an expanded network of remote ground terminals.

DigitalGlobe’s roster of WorldView engineering and co-production partners includes:

· AERO-METRIC – Co-Production and Data Provider
· BAE SYSTEMS – Production Segment Integrator and Co-Production Lead
· Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. – Spacecraft Developer and Integrator
· Boeing Launch Services – Launch Services Provider
· Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems – Engineering Service Provider and Co-Production
· EarthData International – Co-Production and Data Provider
· Environmental Systems Research Institute, Inc. – Co-Production
· Harris Corporation – Satellite Command and Control System, Production Segment Developer, and Co-Production
· IBM – Computing Hardware, Engineering Services, and ERP System Integrator
· InSequence – Systems Engineering Services
· IONIC – GIS Software and Engineering Support
· MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. – Production Segment Developer
· NASA Jet Propulsion Lab – Orbit Determination Tools and Support
· Observera – Planning Services for Calibrations
· PRA – Spectral Algorithms and Engineering Services
· RT Logic – Satellite Interfaces and Control
· SAP – Collaborative Business Solutions Provider
· ViaSat – Ground Antennas