Smallsat Data Evaluation

A framework has been established to provide a repeatable process for evaluating remote sensing imagery and data that supports NASA's Earth science research and application activities. This is an ongoing effort with sets of products in different phases of the process. On-ramp #2 includes a set of products that are currently under evaluation, while the evaluations of Pilot and additional Spire products have been completed, further information on these efforts are included below.

On-ramp #2 Evaluation

Airbus U.S. and BlackSky Commercial Smallsat Data Acquired by NASA
The data are part of ongoing efforts by NASA's Commercial Smallsat Data Acquisition (CSDA) Program to add commercial smallsat data to NASA's Earth science data collection.

To support On-ramp #2 NASA has awarded blanket purchase agreements to Airbus DS GEO (US), Inc., (Airbus) and BlackSky Geospatial Solutions, Inc., (BlackSky) to acquire commercial smallsat data for evaluation to determine the utility for advancing NASA's science and applications development goals.

Airbus is providing a comprehensive catalog of synthetic aperture radar (SAR) Earth observation products from their TerraSAR-X, TanDEM-X, and PAZ X-band radar satellites along with their suite of elevation data products derived from radar data.

BlackSky data are from its constellation of 12 satellites that provide imagery in four reflective bands: red, green, blue, and panchromatic. These satellites are part of BlackSky’s second-generation, or Gen-2, satellites, which are deployed in both Sun-synchronous and mid-inclination orbits to provide global coverage. The high spatial and temporal dawn-to-dusk imagery from BlackSky is applicable to a wide range of pattern-of-life and anomaly detection research.

NASA has funded a set of Principal investigators (PIs) that are experts in the specific imagery products and applications for utilizing the products being evaluated.

A final report will be developed and after review will be made available.

Spire Additional Products Evaluation

As part of the CSDA sustained purchase agreement, additional Spire products were made available that were not part of the original Pilot. A product description of the raw intermediate frequency is included: 

In addition, research was performed on other products, high level summaries are included:

Pilot Evaluation

The first set of evaluations done by CSDA was the Pilot effort which included data products from Planet, Maxar, and Spire. The Pilot formed the basis of further evaluations the program is continuing to evolve and build on the lessons learned during the pilot. A detailed description of the Pilot is available.

Page Last Updated: Mar 2, 2022 at 9:49 AM EST