Landsat 5

Batch Geonews: Landsat 5 Decommissioned, GeoPackage RFC, Geocoding Client API in GDAL/OGR, Drone Stories, and much more

This is an abnormally long version of our 'batch geonews' edition, covering the news since the holiday break.

On the open source & open data front:

On the Esri front:

In the miscellaneous category:

A bunch of minor geo-related stories discussed over Slashdot:

In the maps category:

Batch Geonews: Landsat 5 Suspended, Wikipedia Mobile Switch to OpenStreetMap, Your Facebook Connections Map, Vertical Datums, and much more

It's Easter and I find myself aggregating geonews for you - don't you see how much I love you ;-) Expect less news this week since I'll be participating to the FOSS4G-NA conference. So here's the latest geonews in batch mode.

In the open source and open data front:

In the miscellaneous category:

In the maps category:

Landsat 5 Mission in Jeopardy

SS informed us that the USGS reported that the Landsat 5 mission is in jeopardy.

From the USGS: "The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has stopped acquiring images from the 27-year-old Landsat 5 Earth observation satellite due to a rapidly degrading electronic component. Landsat 5 was launched in 1984 and designed to last 3 years. The USGS assumed operation of Landsat 5 in 2001 and managed to bring the aging satellite back from the brink of total failure on several occasions following the malfunction of key subsystems. There is now an increasing likelihood that the Landsat 5 mission is nearing its end. [...] For several months, the Landsat flight operations team has been closely tracking the fluctuating performance of an amplifier essential for transmitting land-surface images from the Landsat 5 satellite to ground receiving stations in the U.S. and around the world.  Over the past 10 days, problems with the amplifier have led to drastically reduced image download capabilities, a sign of impending failure. [...] Landsat 8, currently called the Landsat Data Continuity Mission, is now scheduled to be launched in January 2013."

We obviously mentioned Landsat 5 often in the past, including in 2005, 2007 and 2009 when it suffered technical problems, but each time, was able to resume satellite imagery acquisition. This time, it's probable it's really the end of Landsat 5. Here's the Landsat 5 Wikipedia article.

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