Hanford, Washington Before Fires
Ron Beck, USGS EROS Data Center
The LANDSAT 7 satellite aquired this true-color image near the Hanford Nuclear Reservation on May 6, 2000, six weeks before a brushfire swept through 100,000 acres of scrubland. LANDSAT’s Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus views the Earth at much higher resolution than the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) Imager or Multi-angle Imaging Spectroradiometer (MISR). Each instrument has different strengths. LANDSAT has up to 15 meter resolution, compared to GOES’s 1 kilometer resolution and MISR’s 275 meter resolution. GOES can view the same area of the Earth as frequently as once a minute, while LANDSAT is limited to once every 16 days. MISR is unique because it views the Earth at 9 different angles simultaneously. Combined with other Earth observing sensors, these instruments are providing us with a new view of the world that is leading us towards a new understanding.