NASA Ready to Launch Shiny New Earth-Observing Satellite, the Old One Is 30 Years Old

The satellite will constantly photograph the Earth

NASA is very interested in the deep space, constantly pushing the limits of how far back we can see. But it's equally interested in our own backyard, including our sun and the Earth itself.

What's more, observations of these objects are bound to yield much more immediate benefits than studying the early days after the Big Bang.

NASA employs a number of satellites, aptly named Landsat, to keep an eye on our planet. These satellites constantly acquire images of our Earth and the program has been one of the longest running.

The first satellite in the program was launched more than four decades ago, the most recent, Landsat 7, in 1999. With Landsat 5, which has been around since 1984, getting ready to be decommissioned, NASA is finally preparing to launch a replacement.

The Landsat Data Continuity Mission is scheduled to put another Landsat into orbit in February. NASA plans to talk more about it during a conference, live streamed on NASA TV at 1 p.m. EST today, 6 p.m. GMT, a few hours from now.

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