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Title: Landsat-8: science and product vision for terrestrial global change research

item ROY, D. - South Dakota State University
item WULDER, M. - Canadian Forest Service
item LOVELAND, T. - Us Geological Survey (USGS)
item WOODCOCK, C. - Boston University
item ALLEN, R.G. - University Of Idaho
item Anderson, Martha
item HELDER, D. - South Dakota State University
item IRONS, J. - National Aeronautics And Space Administration (NASA)
item JOHNSON, D. - National Agricultural Statistical Service (NASS, USDA)
item KENNEDY, R. - Boston University
item SCAMBOS, T. - University Of Colorado
item SCHOTT, J. - Rochester Institute Of Technology
item SHENG, Y. - University Of California
item VERMOTE, ERIC - National Aeronautics And Space Administration (NASA)
item BELWARD, A. - European Commission-Joint Research Centre (JRC)
item BINDSCHADLER, R. - National Aeronautics And Space Administration (NASA)
item COHEN, WARREN - US Department Of Agriculture (USDA)
item Gao, Feng
item HIPPLE, J. - US Department Of Agriculture (USDA)
item HOSTERT, P. - Humboldt University
item HUNTINGTON, J. - Desert Research Institute
item JUSTICE, C. - University Of Maryland
item KILIC, A. - University Of Nebraska
item KOVALSKYY, V. - South Dakota State University
item LEE, Z. - University Of Massachusetts
item LYMBURNER, L. - Geoscience Australia
item MASEK, J. - National Aeronautics And Space Administration (NASA)
item MCCORKEL, J. - National Aeronautics And Space Administration (NASA)
item SHUAI, Y. - National Aeronautics And Space Administration (NASA)
item TREZZA, R. - University Of Idaho
item VOGELMANN, J. - Us Geological Survey (USGS)
item WYNNE, R. - Virginia Tech
item ZHU, Z. - Boston University

Submitted to: Remote Sensing of Environment
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/3/2014
Publication Date: 3/6/2014
Publication URL:
Citation: Roy, D., Wulder, M., Loveland, T., Woodcock, C., Allen, R., Anderson, M.C., Helder, D., Irons, J., Johnson, D., Kennedy, R., Scambos, T., Schott, J., Sheng, Y., Vermote, E., Belward, A., Bindschadler, R., Cohen, W., Gao, F.N., Hipple, J., Hostert, P., Huntington, J., Justice, C., Kilic, A., Kovalskyy, V., Lee, Z., Lymburner, L., Masek, J., McCorkel, J., Shuai, Y., Trezza, R., Vogelmann, J., Wynne, R., Zhu, Z. 2014. Landsat-8: science and product vision for terrestrial global change research. Remote Sensing of Environment. 145:154-172.

Interpretive Summary: The Landsat satellite series has provided a near continuous record of global landcover conditions since 1972, recording impacts of climate, population and land-use change at spatial resolutions (~30-100m) capturing the scale of human impacts. This paper summarizes the research proposed by the current Landsat Science Team, integrating a new epoch of high quality satellite imagery collected by Landsat 8 – recently launched in February, 2013. A description of the mission and the Landsat 8 sensor systems, as well as anticipated data products, is provided. Landsat 8, in conjunction with the full Landsat archive, will contribute to studies of drought and water use change, agricultural monitoring and yield estimation, landcover disturbances such as due to fire and deforestation, fresh and coastal water quality, as well as cryospheric applications in mapping ice sheet flows and and extent and response to changing climate. New science and applications in these areas are outlined, as well as a vision for the future of land imaging at these critical spatial scales.

Technical Abstract: Landsat 8, a NASA and USGS collaboration, acquires global moderate-resolution measurements of the Earth's terrestrial and polar regions in the visible, near-infrared, short wave, and thermal infrared. Landsat 8 extends the remarkable 40 year Landsat record and has enhanced capabilities including new spectral bands in the blue and cirrus cloud-detection portion of the spectrum, two thermal bands, improved sensor signal-to-noise performance and associated improvements in radiometric resolution, and an improved duty cycle that allows collection of a significantly greater number of images per day. This paper introduces the current (2012-2017) Landsat Science Team‘s efforts to establish an initial understanding of Landsat 8 capabilities and the steps ahead in support of priorities identified by the team. Preliminary evaluation of Landsat 8 capabilities and identification of new science and applications opportunities are described with respect to calibration and radiometric characterization; surface reflectance; surface albedo; surface temperature, evapotranspiration and drought; agriculture; land cover, condition, disturbance and change; fresh and coastal water; and snow and ice. Insights into the development of derived ‘higher-level‘ Landsat products are provided in recognition of the growing need for consistently processed, moderate spatial resolution, large area, long-term terrestrial data records for resource management and for climate and global change studies. The paper concludes with future prospects, emphasizing the opportunities for land imaging constellations by combining Landsat data with data collected from other international sensing systems, and consideration of successor Landsat mission requirements.