From its beginning in November 2000, the NASA Earth Observing-1 (EO-1) mission demonstrated the feasibility and performance of a dozen innovative sensor, spacecraft, and operational technologies. The 1-year mission tested a variety of technologies, some of which may be included on the planned 2007 Landsat Data Continuity Mission. Onboard the spacecraft are two land remote sensing instruments: the Advanced Land Imager (ALI), which acquires data in spectral bands and at resolutions similar to Landsat, and Hyperion, which acquires data in 220 10-nanometer-wide bands covering the visible, near-, and shortwave-infrared bands.
Recognizing the remarkable performance of the satellite's instruments and the exceptional value of the data, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and NASA agreed in December 2001 to share responsibility for operating EO-1 on a cost-reimbursable basis as long as customer sales are sufficient to recover flight and ground operations costs.
The EO-1 extended mission operates within constraints imposed by its technology-pioneering origins, but it also provides unique and valuable capabilities. The spacecraft can acquire a target scene three times in a 16-day period. The ALI instrument has additional spectral coverage and greater radiometric dynamic range compared with the sensors on Landsat 7. Hyperion is the first civilian spaceborne hyperspectral imager. As of January 2003, more than 5,000 scenes had been acquired, indexed, and archived.