The time has finally arrived for a new, high-resolution 30-cm satellite constellation. On April 29, 2021, Airbus launched Pléiades Neo 3, the first in a four-satellite constellation. The 30-cm resolution imagery coming from Neo 3 exceeds our expectations with stunning detail and clarity. People can be seen milling around the Cheops Pyramid in Cairo, Egypt or at the United States Capitol in Washington, DC.
The Neo constellation boasts six multispectral bands. Along with a native 30-cm resolution panchromatic band, and the standard red, green, blue and near infrared bands, there is a deep blue and a red-edge band at 1.2-meter resolution. Plant health assessments and land-use change studies will benefit from the extra bands and increased collection capacity.
Once all four satellites are in orbit, the constellation will offer daily revisits and the capacity to collect two million square kilometers per day. At high off-nadir, the constellation can revisit locations twice daily, making Neo an ideal solution for site monitoring. We expect Neo 3 to be ready for commercial sales in Q4 of 2021, after Neo 4 is launched in July.
Here is a summary of the key specifications of Pléiades Neo 3:
- Spectral Bands:
- 6 multispectral channels (i.e. blue, green, red, NIR, deep blue and red edge)
- Sensor Resolution:
- At nadir – 30-cm panchromatic & 1.2-m multispectral
- Footprint Width:14 km (at-nadir)
- Direction: sun-synchronous
- Equatorial Crossing Time: 10:30 AM local time (descending node)
- Georeferenced Horizontal Accuracy: < 5-m CE90 (global average, dependent on terrain); expected 3.5-m CE90 with refined ephemeris data
If you have any questions about the upcoming Pléiades Neo constellation, send us an email at any time to [email protected].