Another Eye in the Sky

Five years ago today — September 18, 2007 — DigitalGlobe launched WorldView 1, a commercial remote sensing satellite, from Vandenberg AFB on a Delta II rocket.

(WorldView 1 image of President Obama’s inauguration. Image from DigitalGlobe site, for editorial use; available for purchase in their online store.)

WorldView 1 was built by Ball Aerospace for DigitalGlobe, and featured a “panchromatic” camera — sensitive to all colors in the visible spectrum — with half-meter resolution. Even though it’s a commercial imager, the National Imagery and Mapping Agency was among its primary customers.

Here’s a complete data sheet about the satellite.

DigitalGlobe launched the WorldView 2 companion spacecraft in December 2009.


Note: I tried to find DigitalGlobe’s “Images for the Media” page (, to pull an image they had already tagged for editorial use, but that section of their web site appeared no longer to exist.

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