In brief: DigitalGlobe 80+ TB/day, Descartes Labs out of beta, Astro Digital Landmapper first images

DigitalGlobe’s 80 TB/day

Planet’s 6 TB/day image data collection figure posted early and often seems to have trigged a response. Maxtor’s DigitalGlobe division today tweeted it collects around 2,500 images and over 80 Tb/day.

While Planet has more satellites in orbit by far with nearly 200, DigitalGlobe’s current fleet of 5 collects imagery at much higher resolution and in multiple wavelengths. Planet’s 160 or so Dove satellites collect imagery at resolutions between 3 to 5 meters, while its higher-resolution SkySat fleet of 13 satellites can provide 80 centimeter still imagery plus short HD video observation. DigitalGlobe’s GeoEye and WorldVIew satellites are capable of anywhere from 50 centimeters down to 31 centimeters in single color resolution, plus have the added feature of being able to collect multispectral images.  Higher resolution and more colors mean more data, with downlink rates onboard DigitalGlobe’s fleet running anywhere between 740 Mbps to 1.2 Gbps.

Descartes Labs out of beta

Image mining company Descartes Labs announced its platform for global-scale predictive analytics is out of beta and now includes the first non-satellite data set and the full Airbus imagery catalog.  Descartes started beta with the satellite data from NASA Landsat and ESA Sentinel missions.  The Airbus OneAtlas catalog has 1.5 meters per pixel over the entire world and refines to 0.5 meters per pixel over the top 2,600 cities, a vast improvement over the 30 meters per pixel in Landsat data.

NOAA’s weather data set, Global Surface Summary of the Day (GSOD) has been integrated, enabling the use of weather data to refine predictions on commodities, such as supply chain movement.

Descartes Labs services run on Google Cloud Platform. The company boasts it has processed over 11 petabytes of compressed data into its predictive analytics system and continues to process 9 terabytes of new data daily.  You can find the full Descartes Labs announcement here.

Astro Digital first images

Via Twitter and blog, Astro Digital publicly posted its first image from its Landmapper-BC satellite, capturing the Carr fire’s impact in Northern California.  Landmapper-BC was launched on January 12 of this year onboard an India PSLV-C40 vehicle.  The satellite is 6U in size, weighs 10 kilograms, and provides 22 meter resolution with light filters for red, green, and near IR to match NASA Landsat 8.  Space Intel Report says Astro Digital plans to launch a total of five Landmapper BC satellites, down from a planned 10 satellites. One Landmapper BC is scheduled to be onboard Vector’s first orbital mission later this year, with another three Landmapper BCs to be launched in 2019.

Doug Mohney

Doug Mohney, a principal at Cidera Analytics, has been working and writing about IT and satellite industries for over 20 years. His real world experience including stints at two start-ups, a commercial internet service provider that went public in 1997 for $150 million and a satellite internet broadband company. Follow him on Twitter at DougonTech or contact him at dmohney139 (at) gmail (dot) com.

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