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NASA celebrates Landsat 5

WASHINGTON, USA — The U.S. space agency is celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Landsat 5 satellite, which was launched March 1, 1984, and is still in operation. Now 22 years beyond its three-year primary mission lifetime, Landsat 5 — built by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and operated by the U.S. Geological Survey — is also well beyond its design lifetime of 15,000 Earth orbits.

NASA said Landsat 5 is one of seven satellites in the Landsat Program but only Landsat 5 and 7, the latter launched in 1999, are functioning.

The next NASA land surface imaging satellite is scheduled for launch in December 2012.