Earth’s land cover is changing at an increasingly rapid rate, and these changes have dramatic impacts on our lives whether we know about them or not. Scientists use a variety of instruments to observe and quantify the changes in an ongoing attempt to better understand their ramifications on society, and on the ecosystems upon which we all depend.
Dating back to 1972 and free to the public, the Landsat series of Earth observing satellites offers the longest and most comprehensive data set of the Earth’s surface from space. The future of the program, the Landsat Data Continuity Mission (LDCM), is a collaboration between NASA and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and is ready to take the next big step. On February 11th, 2013, Landsat 8 is scheduled to launch from Vandenberg Air Force base in California aboard an Atlas V rocket. To learn more about the LDCM, NASA has developed a video available here.
NASA and the USGS have been working on the LDCM for years. To celebrate the LDCM and raise awareness of the many benefits of this increasingly important civilian land imaging satellite, the Landsat Education and Public Outreach Team has put together a website of materials that people at universities, museums, community centers, or anywhere could use to hold their own launch party. They invite us all to participate in this exciting and historic milestone in humanity's efforts to make our Earth more livable and sustainable. You can join others around the world in celebration of this much-anticipated event by hosting a launch party! Planning and hosting your own launch party with NASA resources is fun and easy, and it's a wonderful way to engage your community in your interests and the work you do.
Everything you need to host a great party and join in the launch fun is at your fingertips, right here.
You will find activities and decorations to make your party fun for all ages. You'll be able to watch the launch and associated events live, including talks from NASA and USGS scientists and engineers.
Enjoy the celebration of the LDCM, and please pass this information on to others.