From Event: SPIE Optical Engineering + Applications, 2016
The Landsat 9 mission, currently under development and proceeding towards a targeted launch in late 2020, will be very similar to the Landsat 8 mission, launched in 2013. Like Landsat 8, Landsat 9 is a joint effort between NASA and USGS with two sensors, the Operational Land Imager 2 (OLI-2), essentially a copy of the OLI on Landsat 8 and the Thermal Infrared Sensor 2 (TIRS-2), very similar to the TIRS on Landsat 8. The OLI-2, like OLI, provides 14-bit image data, though for Landsat 9, all 14 bits will be retained and transmitted to the ground. The focal plane modules to be used for OLI-2 were flight spares for OLI and are currently being retested by Ball Aerospace. Results indicate radiometric performance comparable to OLI. The TIRS was a class C instrument, with a 3-year design lifetime, and therefore had limited redundancy. TIRS-2 will be a class B instrument, with a 5-year design lifetime, like OLI (and OLI-2), necessitating design changes to increase redundancy. The stray light and Scene Select Mechanism (SSM) encoder problems observed on orbit with TIRS have also instigated a few design changes to TIRS-2. Stray light analysis and testing have indicated that additional baffles in the TIRS-2 optical system will suppress the out-of-field response. The SSM encoder problems have not been definitively traced to a route cause, though conductive anodic filament growth in the circuit boards is suspected. Improved designs for the encoder are being considered for TIRS-2. The spare Focal Plane Array (FPA) from TIRS is planned for use in TIRS-2; FPA spectral and radiometric performance testing is scheduled for September of this year at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.
Brian L. Markham, Del Jenstrom, Jeffrey G. Masek, Phil Dabney, Jeffrey A. Pedelty, Julia A. Barsi, and Matthew Montanaro, "Landsat 9: status and plans," Proc. SPIE 9972, Earth Observing Systems XXI, 99720G (Presented at SPIE Optical Engineering + Applications: August 30, 2016; Published: 19 September 2016); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2238658.
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