Posted on August 4th, 2020

Monitor High-Value Sites Multiple Times a Day With 50-cm SkySat

Planet is now offering high-resolution SkySat imagery at 50-centimeter (cm) resolution with impressive revisit times. SkySat is a constellation of satellites continuously growing as Planet launches new ‘birds’ every year. Currently, the SkySat constellation revisits a site up to 3 times a day, and with upcoming launches this year that number will soar to up to 12 revisits a day, making it an ideal choice for high-resolution monitoring applications.


Several 50-cm natural color SkySat imagery samples collected over Madrid, Spain on April 3, 2020. With 81-cm multispectral data, these images have color detail not seen in previous high-resolution satellite missions. These images have been processed by Apollo Mapping for improved clarity and colors. (Images Courtesy: Planet)

While previous SkySat satellites collected at lower resolutions, the vast majority of imagery collected from 2020 on can be delivered as a 50-cm 4-band pansharpened product. Further, all new and previously launched SkySat satellites (other than SkySat-1 and 2) now have a native resolution of 65-cm panchromatic and 81-cm 4-band multispectral (i.e. blue, green, red and near-infrared). Using an innovative system, Planet applies super-resolution processing to improve the quality of their high-resolution imagery to 50-cm.

Here is a summary of SkySat’s impressive specifications:

  • Equatorial Crossing Time: 10:30 local time; 13:30 local time for only October 31, 2017 launched sats (approximate; across lit side of Earth); SkySats 16 – 21 crossing times vary daily, with a shifting ~3 hour access window per day
  • Revisit Frequency: 3 to 12 times per day with the entire constellation (latitude dependent, pending additional 2020 launches)
  • Sensor Resolution:
    • Pre-2016 sats – 90-cm panchromatic & 1.0-m multispectral (at-nadir, 500 km altitude)
    • 2016 to October 2019 – 72-cm panchromatic & 1.0-m multispectral (at-nadir, 500 km altitude); transition to 50-cm panchromatic started about October 2019
    • July 2020 and on – 65-cm panchromatic & 81-cm multispectral (at-nadir, 500 km altitude); SkySats 1/2 remain at 72-cm panchromatic & 1.0-m multispectral; delivered as pansharpened 50-cm 4-band imagery through super-resolution processing

You can search for SkySat coverage 24-hours a day by using Image Hunter. If you have any pricing requests, additional questions or would like a new price list with SkySat data added in, send us an email at sales@apollomapping.com! Or check out our website in the meantime for additional 50-cm samples and more detailed SkySat specifications.

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