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QuickBird Imagery Courtesy: DigitalGlobe


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DigitalGlobe’s QuickBird satellite offers sub-meter resolution imagery. Initially, at an operational altitude of 482 km, QuickBird was operated at an altitude of 450 km and continued in a gradual descent until its end of mission life in 2015 at an altitude of 300 km.

QuickBird provided commercial imagery at 0.61 m (PAN) and at 2.4 m (MS) resolution.  A successful launch of QuickBird took place on Oct. 18, 2001, on a Delta-2 vehicle of Boeing from Vandenberg Air Force Base, USA, and its mission life decayed in 2015.

In 2001 the QuickBird project of DigitalGlobe opted for a fairly low orbital altitude of 450 km (from the previous 600 km altitude level) to obtain a higher ground spatial resolution of the imagery; however, at the expense of swath width. Naturally, the low orbit of 450 km requires more orbit raising maneuvers due to the increased drag influence of the atmosphere. The argument went that the S/C carries enough fuel to adjust the lower orbit more frequently over the operational lifetime of the mission. (source: eoportal.org)


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