A Centaur upper stage is lifted onto the first stage booster of a United Launch Alliance Atlas V at the launch pad at Space Launch Complex-3E at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. in preparation for the launch of the Landsat Data Continuity Mission.
The Landsat Data Continuity Mission LDCM is the future of Landsat satellites. It will continue to obtain valuable data and imagery to be used in agriculture, education, business, science, and government. The Landsat Program provides repetitive acquisition of high resolution multispectral data of the Earth's surface on a global basis. The data from the Landsat spacecraft constitute the longest record of the Earth's continental surfaces as seen from space. It is a record unmatched in quality, detail, coverage, and value. Launch is planned for Feb. 2013. Photo credit: NASA/Roy Allison