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Business Case for a CubeSat-based Earth Imaging Constellation

31 May 2011, 21:36 UTC
Business Case for a CubeSat-based Earth Imaging Constellation
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

The use of Commercial Earth Imaging Satellites is growing. Individuals, corporations and governments are finding varied and unique applications for images of our planet.Futron estimates the market for commercial earth imaging topped $1B last year (2010). Uses of Earth Imaging:Disaster Relief – think of all of the satellite images you saw after the Japan Earthquake (including the nuclear reactors)Disaster avoidance - George Clooney (among others) paying to patrol boarder of north and south Sudan using Earth imaging satellites. Helped with hunting down Osama bin Laden (but were any these images from commercial satellites?)Food Commodities tracking – allowing traders to ask and answer questions like, “how do the wheat crops in Kansas look after last night’s hail storm?”Remote Infrastructure observation – the oil industry uses it to keep track of their assets in remote locations Even the US Government is turning to Commercial providers. Last year, the U.S. National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) awarded separate 10-year, $3.5 Billion contracts to image providers DigitalGlobe and GeoEye (these contracts are now under review).The Commercial earth observation markets:Market #1: High-Resolution images (1.5 meters per pixel). But the cost of each satellite means providers have a limited number of satellites (usually 1-2) on orbit.Market #2: Med-Resolution ...

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