environmental-observing satellite

Environmental-observing
(Earth-observation)
satellites


Below are checklists of environmental-observing (Earth-observation) satellites, including launch dates and images of the satellites. This is a work in progress, and completeness is our goal. If readers know of additional information or images, please contact the authors using the e-mail addresses at the bottom of this page.


Satellite series covered:


US Landsat / Earth Resources Technology Satellite (ERTS) series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
Landsat-1 / ERTS-1 (ERTS-A)1972-07-23Landsat / ERTS
Landsat / ERTS
Landsat-1
Landsat-1/2/3 type
Landsat-3
ERTS / Landsat (patch)
Landsat / ERTSLandsat / ERTS
Landsat-2 / ERTS-2 (ERTS-B)1975-01-22
Landsat-3 (Landsat-C / ERTS-C)1978-03-05
Landsat-4 (Landsat-D)1982-07-16Landsat-4
Landsat-4/5 type
Landsat-5
Landsat-5 (Landsat-D1)1984-03-01
Landsat-6 [failed]1993-10-05Landsat-6
Landsat-6
Landsat-6
Landsat-6 (patch)
Landsat-71999-04-15Landsat-7
Landsat-7
Landsat-7 (patch)
Landsat-8 / LDCM2013-02-11Landsat-8
Landsat-8
Landsat-9
Landsat-10

French Satellite Probatoire de l'Observation de la Terre (SPOT) series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
SPOT-1 (SPOT-A)1986-02-21SPOT-1
SPOT-1
SPOT-1/2/3 type
SPOTSPOT
SPOT-2 (SPOT-B)1990-01-22
SPOT-31993-09-26
SPOT-41998-03-24SPOT-4
SPOT-4
SPOT-4
SPOT-52002-05-03SPOT-5
SPOT-62012-09-09SPOT-6
SPOT-72014-06-30

Indian Remote Sensing (IRS) series satellites (including OceanSat, ResourceSat, and CartoSat):

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
IRS-1A1988-03-17IRS
IRS-1
IRSIRS
IRS-1B1991-08-29
IRS-1E / IRS-P1 [failed]1993-09-20
IRS-P21994-10-15IRS-P2
IRS-1C1995-12-28IRS-1C/1D
IRS-P31996-03-21IRS-P3
IRS-1D1997-09-29IRS-1C/1D
IRS-1D
IRS-P4 / OceanSat-11999-05-26IRS-P4
IRS-P6 / ResourceSat-12003-10-17IRS-P6
IRS-P5 / CartoSat-12005-05-05IRS-P5
IRS-2 / CartoSat-22007-01-10CartoSat-2
IRS-2A / CartoSat-2A2008-04-28
IRS-P7 / OceanSat-22009-09-23OceanSat-2
IRS-2B / CartoSat-2B2010-07-12
ResourceSat-22011-04-20ResourceSat-2

European Remote Sensing (ERS) satellites:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
ERS-11991-07-16ERS
ERS
ERS
ERS-1
ERS-1
ERSERS
ERS-21995-04-20

Japanese Marine Observation Satellite (MOS) / Momo series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
MOS-1A / Momo-11987-02-19MOS
MOS
MOS-1
MOSMOS
MOS-1B / Momo-1B1990-02-07MOS-2

Japanese ADvanced Earth Observing Satellite (ADEOS) / Midori series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
ADEOS-1 / Midori / TOMS(-4?)1996-08-17ADEOS
ADEOS
ADEOS
ADEOS
ADEOS
ADEOSADEOS
ADEOS-2 / Argos-2+2002-12-14

Japanese Advanced Land Observing Satellite (ALOS) / Midori series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
ALOS-1 / Daichi-12006-01-24ALOS-1
ALOS-2 / Diachi-22014-05-24ALOS-2
ALOS-32019-?ALOS-3

US Earth Observing (EO) satellite series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
EO-1 / NMP2000-11-21EO-1
EO-1
EO-1 (patch)
EO-1EO-1
EO-2 / NMPCanceled
EO-3 / NMPCanceled

US Earth Observation System (EOS) satellites:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
EOS-AM1 / EOS-Terra1999-12-18EOS-Terra (early-design)
EOS-Terra
EOS (patch)
EOS-Terra (patch)
EOSEOS
EOS-PM1 / EOS-Aqua2002-05-04EOS-Aqua
EOS-Aqua
EOS-Aura (formerly EOS-Chem)2004-07-15EOS-Aura
EOS-Aura
EOS-Aura (patch)

(Selected) Russian Resurs-series satellites:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
Resurs-OE-1 / Kosmos-14841983-07-24ResursResurs
Resurs-O1-1 / Kosmos-16891985-10-03
Resurs-O1-2 / Kosmos-19391988-04-20
Resurs-F1, Pion-1, Pion-21989-05-25
Resurs-F21989-06-27Resurs-F2
Resurs-F3, Pion-3, Pion-41989-07-18
Resurs-F41989-08-15
Resurs-F51989-09-06
Resurs-F61990-05-29
Resurs-F71990-07-17
Resurs-F81990-08-16
Resurs-F91990-09-07
Resurs-F101991-05-21
Resurs-F111991-06-28
Resurs-F121991-07-23
Resurs-F131991-08-21
Resurs-F141992-04-29
Resurs-F151992-06-23
Resurs-F16, Pion-5, Pion-61992-08-19
Resurs-5001992-11-15
Resurs-F171993-05-21
Resurs-F181993-06-25
Resurs-F191993-08-24
Resurs-O1-31994-11-04Resurs-O1
Resurs-F201995-09-26
Resurs-F1M-11997-11-18
Resurs-O1-41998-07-10Resurs-O1
Resurs-F1M-21999-09-28
Resurs-O219xx-?Resurs-O2
Resurs-DK12006-06-15Resurs-DK1
Resurs-P12013-06-25Resurs-P1

Russian Almaz-series satellites:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
Almaz-T1 / Kosmos-1803 [failed]1986-11-29Almaz-1
Almaz-1
Almaz-1Almaz-1
Almaz-T2 / Kosmos-18701987-07-25
Almaz-11991-03-31

Russian Okean-series satellites:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
Okean-E1 / Kosmos-10761979-02-12OkeanOkean
Okean-E2 / Kosmos-11511980-01-23
Okean-OE1 / Kosmos-15001983-09-28Kosmos-1500
Kosmos-1500
Okean-OE2 / Kosmos-16021984-09-28
Okean-O1-1 / Kosmos-17661986-06-28
Okean-O1-2 / Kosmos-18691987-07-16
Okean-11988-07-05
Okean-2 [failed]1989-06-09
Okean-21990-02-28
Okean-31991-06-04
Okean-41994-10-11Okean-O
Okean-O
Okean-O11999-07-17

Ukraine / Russian Sich-series satellites:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
Sich-11995-08-31Sich-1
Sich
Sich-1
SichSich
Sich-1m [failed]2004-12-24Sich-1m
Sich-22011-08-17Sich-2

China (PR) Brazil Earth Resources Satellite (CBERS) / ZY-1 series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
ZY-1-01 / CBERS-11999-10-14ZY-1
ZY-1 (CBERS)
ZY-1 / CBERSZY-1 / CBERS
ZY-1-02 / CBERS-22003-10-21
ZY-1-02B / CBERS-2B2007-09-19
ZY-1-02C (not CBERS)2011-12-22
ZY-1-03 / CBERS-3 [failed]2013-12-09ZY-1-03
ZY-1-04 / CBERS-42014-12-07
ZY-1-04A / CBERS-4A2018-?

China (PR) ZY-2 and ZY-3 series satellites:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
ZY-2-01 / Resource-2A2000-09-01ZY-2ZY-2 / Resource-2 and ZY-3 / Resource-3ZY-2 / Resource-2 and ZY-3 / Resource-3
ZY-2-02 / Resource-2B2002-10-27
ZY-2-03 / Resource-2C2004-11-06
ZY-3-01 / Resource-3A2012-01-09ZY-3
ZY-3-02 / Resource-3B2016-05-30

China (PR) Haiyang (HY) / Ocean series satellites:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
HY-1 / Ocean-12002-05-16HY-1HY-1 (with FY-1D)
HY-1B / Ocean-1B2007-04-11HY-1B
HY-1B
HY-1B

China (PR) ShiYan (SY) / TanSuo (TS) series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
SY-1 / TS-12004-04-18SY-1SY-1
SY-2 / TS-22004-11-18SY-2
SY-2 (back)
SY-3 / TS-32008-11-05

China (PR) Remote Sensing Satellite (RSS) / Yaogan-series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
RSS-1 / Yaogan-12006-04-27Yaogan-1/3/10 type
RSS-2 / Yaogan-22007-05-25Yaogan-2/4/7 typeYaogan-2
Yaogan-2
RSS-3 / Yaogan-32007-11-12Yaogan-1/3/10 typeYaogan-3
Yaogan-3
Yaogan-3
RSS-4 / Yaogan-42008-12-01Yaogan-2/4/7 type
RSS-5 / Yaogan-52008-12-15Yaogan-5
RSS-6 / Yaogan-62009-04-22Yaogan-6
RSS-7 / Yaogan-72009-12-09Yaogan-2/4/7 type
RSS-8 / Yaogan-82009-12-15Yaogan-8Yaogan-8 (with OSCAR-68)
RSS-9 / Yaogan-9A,B,C2010-03-05Yaogan-9
RSS-10 / Yaogan-102010-08-10Yaogan-1/3/10 type
RSS-11 / Yaogan-112010-09-22Yaogan-11
RSS-12 / Yaogan-122011-11-09Yaogan-5
RSS-13 / Yaogan-132011-11-29Yaogan-13
RSS-14 / Yaogan-142012-05-10Yaogan-14
RSS-15 / Yaogan-152012-05-29Yaogan-8
RSS-16 / Yaogan-16A,B,C2012-11-25Yaogan-9
RSS-17 / Yaogan-17A,B,C2013-09-01Yaogan-9"Yaogan-17A-B-C"
"Yaogan-17"
RSS-18 / Yaogan-182013-10-29Yaogan-13
RSS-19 / Yaogan-192013-11-20Yaogan-8
RSS-20 / Yaogan-20A,B,C2014-08-09Yaogan-9
RSS-21 / Yaogan-212014-09-08Yaogan-5

(Selected) China (PR) Gaofen (GF) series satellites:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
GF-12013-04-26GF-1GF-1
GF-1
GF-1
"GF-1"
GF-22014-08-19GF-2
GF-3201x-?
GF-42015-12-29GF-4GF-4
GF-4
GF-62016-?GF-1
GF-82015-06-26GF-8GF-8
GF-92015-09-14GF-9

Republic of China (Taiwan) SATellite (Rocsat) / FORMOsa SATellite (Formosat) / Chunghua series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
Rocsat-1 / Formosat-1 / Chunghua-11999-01-26Rocsat-1Rocsat-1
Rocsat-2 / Formosat-2*2004-05-20Rocsat-2Rocsat-2
Rocsat-2
Rocsat-2
Rocsat-2
Formosat-3 / COSMIC2006-04-15Formosat-3Formosat-3
Formosat-52016-?Formosat-5
Formosat-6201?-?Formosat-6
Formosat-7 / COSMIC-22017-?Formosat-7
Formosat-820??-?Formosat-8

*Rocsat-2 newspaper article

Israeli Earth Resources Observation Satellite (EROS) series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
EROS-A12000-12-06EROS-A1
EROS-1
EROSEROS
EROS-A2Canceled
EROS-B2006-04-25EROS-B
EROS-C2018-?EROS-C

Argentine Satellite de Aplicaciones Cientifico (SAC) series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
SAC-A [STS-88/Endeavour-deployed]1998-12-04SAC-ASACSAC
SAC-B1996-11-04SAC-B
SAC-C2000-11-21SAC-C
SAC-C
SAC-D / Aquarius / ESSP-62011-06-10SAC-D

Canadian RADAR SATellite (Radarsat) series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
Radarsat-11995-11-04Radarsat-1
Radarsat-1
Radarsat-1
Radarsat-1
RadarsatRadarsat
Radarsat-22007-12-14Radarsat-2

KOrean Multi-Purpose SATellite (Kompsat) / Arirang series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
Kompsat-1 / Arirang-11999-12-21Kompsat-1
Kompsat (and Acrimsat) (patch)
KompsatKompsat
Kompsat-2 / Arirang-22006-07-28Kompsat-2
Kompsat-2
Kompsat-3 / Arirang-32012-07-15Kompsat-3
Kompsat-3A / Arirang-3A2015-03-25
Kompsat-5 / Arirang-52013-08-22Kompsat-5

US / French Jason / Ocean Surface Topography Mission (OSTM) series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
Jason-12001-12-07Jason-1JasonJason
Jason-2 / OSTM2008-06-20Jason-2
Jason-2 (patch)
Jason-32016-01-17
Jason-CS / Sentinel-52020-?Jason-CS

Italian COnstellation of small Satellites for Mediterranean basin Observation (COSMO-SkyMed) series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
COSMO-12007-06-08COSMO-SkyMed
COSMO-22007-12-09
COSMO-32008-10-25
COSMO-42010-11-06COSMO-SkyMed
COSMO-SkyMed

European Space Agency (ESA) CRYOgenic SATellite (CryoSat) series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
CryoSat-1 [failed]2005-10-08CryoSat
CryoSat-1
CryoSatCryoSat
CryoSat-2 / Earth Explorer-32010-04-08

NIGERIA SATellite (NigeriaSat) series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
NigeriaSat-12003-09-27NigeriaSat-1
NigeriaSat-22011-08-17NigeriaSat-2

ALgeria SATellite (AlSat) series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
AlSat-12002-11-28AlSat-1AlSatAlSat
AlSat-2A2010-07-12AlSat-2

French Pleiades (Pléiades) series:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
Pleiades-1A2011-12-17Pleiades-1PleiadesPleiades
Pleiades-1B2012-12-03

A-Train environmental-observing satellites (except EOS):

SatelliteCountryLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
PARASOLFrance2004-12-18PARASOLPARASOLPARASOL
CloudSat / ESSP-4USA2006-04-28CloudSat
CloudSat
CloudSatCloudSat
CALIPSO / ESSP-3France2006-04-28CALIPSO
CALIPSO (patch)
CALIPSOCALIPSO
OCO-1 / ESSP-5 [failed]USA2009-02-24OCO
OCO
OCO-1OCO
Glory [failed]USA2011-03-04GloryGloryGlory
OCO-2 / ESSP-5 [replacement]USA2014-07-02OCO-2OCO-2OCO
OCO-3USA2018-?OCO

European Sentinel-series satellites:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
Sentinel-1A2014-04-03Sentinel-1"Sentinel"
Sentinel-1B2016-04-25
Sentinel-2A2015-06-23Sentinel-2
Sentinel-2B2017-?
Sentinel-3A / Copernicus2016-02-16Sentinel-3
Sentinel-3B2017-?
Sentinel-4A / MTG-S-12021-?MTG-S
MTG-S
Sentinel-4B / MTG-S-22029-?
Sentinel-5-Precursor2016-?Sentinel-5-Precursor
Sentinel-5 / MetOp-SG2021-?MetOp-SG-A
Sentinel-5 / Jason-CS2020-?Jason-CS

Other (selected) US environmental-observing satellites:

SatelliteLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
SeaSat-1 (SeaSat-A)1978-06-27SeaSat
SeaSat
SeaSatSeaSat
ERBS / SAGE-2 [STS-41G/Challenger-deployed]1984-10-05ERBS
ERBS
ERBS
ERBS (patch, with STS-41G/Challenger)
ERBS (patch)
ERBSERBS
Geosat-11985-03-13GeosatGeosat-1 and GFOGeosat-1 and GFO
UARS [STS-48/Discovery-deployed]1991-09-12UARS
UARS
UARS
UARS (patch, with STS-48/Discovery)
UARSUARS
TOPEX-Poseidon1992-08-10TOPEX-Poseidon
TOPEX-Poseidon
TOPEX-Poseidon
TOPEX-Poseidon
TOPEX-Poseidon
TOPEX-Poseidon (early-design)
TOPEX-PoseidonTOPEX-Poseidon
TOMS-EP / TOMS(-3?)1996-07-02TOMS-EP
TOMS-EP
TOMS-EPTOMS-EP
TRMM1997-11-28TRMM
TRMM
TRMM
TRMM
TRMMTRMM
GFO1998-02-10GFO
GFO
Geosat-1 and GFOGeosat-1 and GFO
QuikScat1999-06-20QuikScat
QuikScat
QuikScat (patch)
QuikScatQuikScat
MTI2000-03-12MTI
QuikTOMS / TOMS-5 [failed]2001-09-21QuikTOMSQuikTOMS (with OrbView-4)
Coriolis / WindSat2003-01-06CoriolisCoriolisCoriolis
ICESat2003-01-12ICESat
ICESat
ICESat (with Explorer-82)
Hydros / ESSP-7CanceledHydros
VCL / ESSP-1CanceledVCL
GPM2014-02-27GPM
SMAP2015-01-31SMAP
SMAP (patch)
CYGNSS-1/8 / ESSP-?2016-?CYGNSS

Other (selected) non-US environmental-observing satellites:

SatelliteCountryLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
JERS-1 / Fuyo-1Japan (NASDA)1992-02-11JERS-1
JERS
JERSJERS
TemisatItaly1993-08-31TemisatTemisat
Temisat
SACI-1Brazil1999-10-14SACI-1SACI-1 (with ZY-1-01 )"SACI-1"
SACI-2 [failed]Brazil1999-12-11SACI-2
Tsinghua-1China (PR)2000-06-28Tsinghua-1
EnvisatEurope (ESA)2002-03-01Envisat
Envisat
Envisat
Envisat-1
Envisat
EnvisatEnvisat
CESARSpain / ArgentinaProposed"CESAR"
"CESAR"
BilsatTurkey2003-09-27Bilsat-1
Monitor-ERussia2005-08-26Monitor-E
BelKA-1 [failed]Russia2006-11-26BelKA-1BelKA-1
BelKA-1
LAPAN-TUBsatIndonesia / Germany2007-01-10LAPAN-TUBsatLAPAN-TUBsat
LAPAN-TUBsat
LAPAN-TUBsat
EgyptSat-1Egypt2007-04-17EgyptSat-1EgyptSat-1
EgyptSat-1
TerraSAR-XGermany2007-06-15TerraSAR-XTerraSAR-X
TerraSAR-X
TerraSAR-X
TerraSAR-X
HJ-1A, HJ-1BChina (PR)2008-09-06HJ-1AHJ-1A+1B
RapidEye-1 (Tachys), RapidEye-2 (Mati), RapidEye-3 (Choma), RapidEye-4 (Choros), RapidEye-5 (Trochia)Germany2008-08-29RapidEyeRapidEye
THEOSThailand2008-10-01THEOSTHEOS
GOSAT-1 / IbukiJapan (JAXA)2009-01-23GOSAT-1"GOSAT"
SMOS / Earth Explorer-2Europe (ESA)2009-11-02SMOSSMOSSMOS
TanDEM-XGermany2010-06-21TanDEM-XTanDEM-X
RasatTurkey2011-08-17RasatRasat
Rasat
Megha-TropiquesIndia / France2011-10-12Megha-Tropiques"Megha-Tropiques"
"Megha-Tropiques"
GCOM-W / ShizukuJapan (JAXA)2012-05-17GCOM-W
BKA / BelKA-2Belarus/Russia2012-07-22BelKA-2"BelKA-2"
BKA
BKA
Kanopus-VRussia2012-07-22Kanopus-V"Kanopus-Vulcan"
"Kanopus-B"
SARAL / Argos-3India / France2013-02-25SARAL"SARAL"
"SARAL"
Kondor-1Russia2013-04-27Kondor-E1"Kondor-1"
Kuaizhou-1China (PR)2013-09-25
VNREDSat-1aVietnam2014-05-07VNREDSat-1"VNREDSat-1a"
DMC-3UK2015-07-10DMC-3
ADM-Aeolus / Earth Explorer-4Europe (ESA)2017-?ADM-Aeolus
GOSAT-2Japan (JAXA)2027-?GOSAT-2
EarthCARE / Earth Explorer-6Europe (ESA)2018-?EarthCARE
RCMCanada2018-?RCM
PRSSPakistan201x-?PRSSPRSS
TolouIran201x-?TolouTolou
GCOM-CJapan (JAXA)201x-?GCOM-C
Biomass / Earth Explorer-7Europe (ESA)2020-?Biomass

US commercial environmental-observing satellites:

SatelliteCompanyLaunch DateImages
referencelaunch coversother postal items
EarlyBird-1 [failed]Earth Watch Inc.1997-12-24EarlyBird
Ikonos-1 [failed]Space Imaging Co.1999-04-27IkonosIkonosIkonos
Ikonos-2Space Imaging Co.1999-09-24
QuickBird-1 [failed]DigitalGlobe Inc.2000-11-20QuickBirdQuickBird
QuickBird-2DigitalGlobe Inc.2001-10-18QuickBird-2
OrbView-1Orbital Imaging Corp.1995-04-03OrbView-1OrbViewOrbView
OrbView-2 / SeaStar / SeaWiFSOrbital Imaging Corp.1997-08-01OrbView-2
OrbView-2
SeaWiFSSeaWiFS
OrbView-3Orbital Imaging Corp.2003-06-26OrbView-3OrbViewOrbView
OrbView-4 [failed]Orbital Imaging Corp.2001-09-21OrbView-4
GeoEye-1 (formerly OrbView-5)GeoEye Inc.2008-09-06GeoEye-1GeoEyeGeoEye
GeoEye-2GeoEye Inc.2017-?GeoEye-2
WorldView-1Satellite Imaging Corp.2007-09-18WorldView-1WorldViewWorldView
WorldView-2Satellite Imaging Corp.2009-10-08WorldView-2
WorldView-3Satellite Imaging Corp.2014-08-13
SkySat-1Skybox Imaging Inc.2013-11-21SkySat-1SkySatSkySat


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Updated: 2016-09-20