GeoEye-1 Satellite Imagery / Sensor Specifications - Remote Sensing Satellite Image Tutorial
GeoEye-1 Satellite Imagery / Sensor Specifications

Satellite Imaging Corporation acquires and processes imagery from the groundbreaking GeoEye-1 satellite sensor. The satellite sensor launched on September 6, 2008 (view launch video).

About the GeoEye-1 Satellite

GeoEye-1 Satellite Sensor

The GeoEye-1 Satellite sensor was developed by GeoEye and features the most sophisticated technology ever used in a commercial remote sensing system.

GeoEye-1 is capable of acquiring image data at 0.41 meter panchromatic (B&W) and 1.65 meter multispectral resolution. It also features a revisit time of less than three days, as well as the ability to locate an object within just three meters of its physical location.

This newly developed sensor is optimized for large projects, as it can collect over 350,000 square kilometers of pan-sharpened multispectral satellite imagery every day.

Learn About GeoEye-1

Click to watch a video presentation about GeoEye-1

Above: GeoEye-1 Satellite Sensor - Image Credit: GeoEye

GeoEye-1: Satellite Sensor Characteristics

The following specifications are courtesy of GeoEye, and are subject to change.


Launch Date September 6, 2008
11:50:57 to 11:52:21 AM PST
Camera Modes • Simultaneous panchromatic and multispectral (pan-sharpened)
• Panchromatic only
• Multispectral only
Resolution 0.41 m / 1.34 ft* panchromatic (nominal at Nadir)
1.65 m / 5.41 ft* multispectral (nominal at Nadir)
Metric Accuracy/Geolocation CE stereo: 2 m / 6.6 ft
LE stereo: 3 m / 9.84 ft
CE mono: 2.5 m / 8.20 ft
These are specified as 90% CE (circular error) for the horizontal and 90% LE (linear error) for the vertical with no ground control points (GCP's)
Swath Widths & Representative Area Sizes • Nominal swath width - 15.2 km / 9.44 mi at Nadir
• Single-point scene - 225 sq km (15x15 km)
• Contiguous large area - 15,000 sq km (300x50 km)
• Contiguous 1° cell size areas - 10,000 sq km
(100x100 km)
• Contiguous stereo area - 6,270 sq km (224x28 km)
(Area assumes pan mode at highest line rate)
Imaging Angle Capable of imaging in any direction
Revisit Frequency at 684 km Altitude (40° Latitude Target)
Max Pan GSD (m) Off Nadir Look Angle (deg) Average Revisit (days)
0.42 10 8.3
0.50 28 2.8
0.59 35 2.1
Daily Monoscopic Area Collection Capacity Up to 700,000 sq km/day (270,271 sq mi/day) of pan area (about the size of Texas). Up to 350,000 sq km/day (135,135 sq mi/day) of pan-sharpened multispectral area (about the size of New Mexico)

* Data reflects ground sample distance resolution at Nadir for exclusive use by the U.S. government and any foreign government that the U.S. government may designate. Imagery sold to commercial customers will be resampled to 0.5-meter resolution. GeoEye’s current operating license with NOAA does not permit the commercial sale of imagery below 0.5-meter resolution.


Launch Vehicle Delta II
Launch Vehicle Manufacturer Boeing Corporation
Launch Location Vandenberg Air Force Base, California
Satellite Weight 1955 kg / 4310 lbs
Satellite Storage and Downlink 1 Terabit recorder; X-band downlink (at 740 mb/sec or 150 mb/sec)
Operational Life Fully redundant 7+ year design life; fuel for 15 years
Satellite Modes of Operation • Store and forward
• Real-time image and downlink
• Direct uplink with real-time downlink
Orbital Altitude 684 kilometers / 425 miles
Orbital Velocity About 7.5 km/sec or 17,000 mi/hr
Inclination/Equator Crossing Time 98 degrees / 10:30am
Orbit type/period Sun-synchronous / 98 minutes

GeoEye-1 Satellite Imagery Gallery

Please take a look at our GeoEye-1 Satellite Sensor Gallery to view captivating images produced by this sensor.