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Remote Sensing Technology Center of Japan


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Earth observation satellites of Japan and the world


There are many kinds of Earth observation satellites. They are distinguished by their equipped sensors. For example, sensors with specifications of a swath width of 185km and a spatial resolution of 30m recognize objects more than 30mx30m in size in an 185km-wide area.
Some Earth observation satellites are listed below.

1. Japan’s Earth observation satellites
  • Momo-1 (Marine observing satellite, MOS-1/1b) : Optical sensor, passive micro wave sensor
  • Fuyo-1 (Japanese earth resources satellite, JERS-1) : Optical sensor, active micro wave sensor
  • Midori-1 (Advanced earth observing satellite, ADEOS) : Optical sensor, Passive micro wave sensor
  • Midori-2 (Advanced earth observing satellite, ADEOSII) : Optical sensor, passive micro wave sensor
  • Daichi (Advanced land observing satellite, ALOS) : Optical sensor, active micro wave sensor
2. International satellites equipped with Japanese sensors
  • Tropical Rainfall Measurement Mission, TRMM) : Active micro wave sensor
  • Aqua : Passive micro wave sensor
3. International satellites
  • Landsat (USA) : Optical sensor
  • SPOT (France) : Optical sensor
  • IRS (India) : Optical sensor, etc
  • Envisat (ESA) : Active micro wave sensor
  • RADARSAT (Canada) : Active micro wave sensor, etc
  • IKONOS : Optical sensor
  • Quickbird : Optical sensor
  • OrbView 3 : Optical sensor