Landsat—From the Archives

  • Released Monday, July 23, 2012

The Landsat program is the longest continuous global record of Earth observations from space — ever. On July 23, 1972 NASA launched the first satellite in this program, then known as ERTS, the Earth Resources Technology Satellite and later renamed Landsat 1. In honor of that history, NASA edited together selections of an archive video from 1973 about the ERTS launch.

Featured in this 1973 video was a senior geologist at NASA, Nicholas Short, and at Dartmouth College, Robert Simpson and David Lindgren.

NASA and the U.S. Department of the Interior through the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) jointly manage Landsat, and the USGS preserves a nearly 50-year archive of Landsat data that is freely available over the Internet. The next Landsat satellite, known as Landsat 9, is scheduled for launch in 2021.

For more information about Landsat visit, or

To watch the entire 23-minute long NASA archive video of the ERTS Launch, go here.


Please give credit for this item to:
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

Landsat is a joint program of NASA and the US Geological Survey

Release date

This page was originally published on Monday, July 23, 2012.
This page was last updated on Wednesday, May 3, 2023 at 1:52 PM EDT.


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This visualization originally appeared on the following tapes:
  • Landsat 40th Anniversary (ID: 2012081)
    Monday, July 23, 2012 at 4:00AM
    Produced by - Walt Feimer (HTSI)