DigitalGlobe, one of the leading providers of imagery for Google Earth, is launching their new WorldView-3 satellite in a few hours. It is scheduled to launch at 11:29am PDT today from Vandenberg Air Force Base, and you can watch a live broadcast of the launch here.
The new satellite will feature some great enhancements over previous ones, including:
- Will capture imagery at 31 cm resolution, the highest available resolution on the market. This allows you to see not only a car, but the windshield and the direction the car is going. Something as small as home plate can be seen with 31 cm resolution.
- Due to its shortwave infrared sensor, the satellite can actually image through haze, fog, dust, smoke and other air-born particulates.
- Beyond crop mapping, this satellite will actually be able to identify moisture levels, differentiate between healthy and unhealthy crops, and even classify species on the ground.
- The satellite can identify types of minerals on the earth’s surface
- It can identify not only a tree’s class and species, but its health as well
It should be a great step forward for imaging, and ultimately for Google Earth. Check out the infographic below for an overview of the satellite, visit worldview3.digitalglobe.com for more information, and watch the launch live in a few hours.