Landsat-8 is assembled by Orbital Sciences Corporation under contract from NASA on the basis of its own Orbital LEOSt platform. To optimize the accuracy of determining the orientation of the satellite, three high-precision astrodetectors (ar-3, two of which operate in active mode), a scalable inertial guidance system SIRU (Scalable Inertial Reference Unit), GPS receivers and two triaxial magnetometers are used. Improved performance of the target instruments reduces radiometric distortion compared to previous Landsat satellites, and the use of more advanced CCD devices improves signal-to-noise ratio and image quality. The instruments measure 4096 different levels of reflected light, while the ETMP onboard camera on the Landsat-7 satellite could measure 256 different levels.

Example of satellite imagery from Landsat-8 © NASA, USGS
Proletarian reservoir, Landsat - 8 satellite image © NASA, USGS, date of shooting 03.05.2013
Volga river, satellite image from Landsat - 8 © NASA, USGS, date of shooting 28.05.2013
Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, image from LANDSAT-8 spacecraft © NASA, USGS, date of shooting 24.08.2013
Antarctic Peninsula, Landsat - 8 satellite image © NASA, USGS, date of survey 11.01.2014
Argentine Andes, image from LANDSAT-8 © NASA, USGS, date of shooting 06.04.2014
Andes, Bolivia, image from LANDSAT-8 © NASA, USGS, date of shooting 13.07.2014
Amazon lowland, image from LANDSAT-8 © NASA, USGS, date of shooting 03.09.2014
Suzhou, China, image from LANDSAT-8 © NASA, USGS, date of shooting 26.10.2014

Three ground stations located in Sioux falls (South Dakota), Svalbard (Norway) and Gilmore Creek (Alaska) are used to receive data from the LDCM satellite. The global Landsat data archive contains coverage of almost the entire surface of the Earth, with some regions, including the entire territory of Russia, filmed repeatedly. Every day, these stations receive up to 400 images of the Earth's surface, which are available to users within 24 hours.

Technical characteristics of Landsat-8 spacecraft

Name of the spacecraft Landsat-8
Country USA
Developer Orbital Sciences Corporation (OSC) (USA; ex. General dynamic information systems); aerospace (USA)
Operator NASA, USGS (USA)
Launch vehicle Atlas 5
Launch date 11.02.2013
  height, km
  inclination, degree
  circulation period, min
  number of turns per day
  crossing time of the equator, hours
Period of active existence, years 5
Power, W 4300
Mass of spacecraft, kg 2623
Follow-up period, day 16

Technical characteristics of Landsat-8 survey equipment:

Name of the imaging system OLI and TIRS
Spectral ranges, microns Panchromatic: 0.50 to less than 0.68
Purple: 0.43-0.45
Blue: 0.45-0.52
Green: 0.53-0.60
Red: 0.63-0.68
Near IR: 0.85–0.89
IR: 1.36-1.39, 1.56-1.66, 2.10-2.30
Thermal IR: 10.40-12.50
Number of line elements 6000 (OLI; 18000 PAN), 1500 (TIRS)
Dynamic range, bit 12
Spatial Resolution, m 15 (PAN), 30 (VNIR, SWIR), 100 (TIR)
Shooting bandwidth, km 185
Data transfer rate, Mbit / sec 265(OLI), 26,2(TIRS)
Main areas of using data obtained from Landsat-8 spacecraft:
  • updating the topographic sub-basis for the development of projects of territorial planning schemes of the subjects of the Federation.
  • justification of prospective areas for oil and gas exploration, forecasting and identification of oil and gas traps, potential assessment of their oil and gas potential.
  • monitoring and forecasting of waterlogging and desertification, salinization, fires, floods, floods, etc.
  • prevention and liquidation of emergency situations.
  • environmental monitoring.
The main scientific objectives of Landsat-8:
  • Collection and preservation of multispectral images of medium resolution (30 meters per point) for at least 5 years.
  • Maintain geometry, calibration, coverage, spectral characteristics, image quality and data availability at a level like previous Landsat satellites.
  • Free distribution of Landsat-8 images.

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