Posted on June 3rd, 2015

Au Revior SPOT 5 – It Was a Pleasure to Work With You

Here is the first image ever beamed back to earth by SPOT 5 just 3 days after its launch into space on May 7, 2002. This is a 2.5-meter panchromatic image of Eleusis Harbor, Greece. © CNES 2015, Distribution Airbus Defense and Space / Spot Image S.A., France, all rights reserved.

Continuing the sad trend of decommissioned satellites this year, SPOT 5 is the latest industry loss. Launched on May 4, 2002, SPOT 5 has one of the longest continuous imagery records for a commercial satellite launch. Amassing an amazing archive of 11,833,000 images, SPOT 5 collected more than 42 BILLION square kilometers of medium resolution data in its 13 year lifetime!

On March 31, 2015, SPOT 5 re-entered the Earth’s atmosphere, burning up as it traveled through the gaseous layer. Fittingly, the European built satellite collected its first image on May 7, 2002 over Eleusis Harbor, Greece; and ended its life imaging on March 29, 2015 off the coast of Baja California Sur, Mexico.

For those of you who have used SPOT 5 in the past, the huge archive of medium resolution data will still be available for sale through Apollo Mapping.

One of the last images ever collected by SPOT 5 over Stockholm, Sweden on March 11, 2015. This is a simulated 2.5-meter color SPOT 5 image. © CNES 2015, Distribution Airbus Defense and Space / Spot Image S.A., France, all rights reserved.

And for those of you requiring new medium-resolution imagery for your projects, the 1.5-meter panchromatic and 6-meter multispectral satellites, SPOT 6 and SPOT 7, will be excellent substitutes moving forward.

For more technical information on the SPOT 1 to 7 satellite constellation, you can refer to our website here or send an email to



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