Future land observing satellites having multiple thematic mappers will produce data at rates of 100 to 300 Mbps. These rates, coupled with a high daily scene production rate, will require new and innovative approaches to ground processing. A consideration of future downlink rates and data volumes is made. Requirements specific to the future user community are discussed. Next, advanced technologies required to achieve an operational system in the 1985-1990 time frame are considered. Planned advances in the fields of communications, mass storage, bulk memories, and data processing are discussed. Utilizing advanced devices, a centralized data processing system capable of handling the 100 Mbps data rate is presented. New approaches, including a parallel pipelined calibration front-end, real-time brouse image production, a high bandwidth optical disk archive, regional image broadcast and massively parallel product production, are considered. A distributed system capable of handling the 300 Mbps data rate is next discussed. Designs are presented for a hub system and a regional processing center. Migration considerations involving the transition from a basic 100 Mbps centralized system to a 300 Mbps fully distributed system are discussed. Finally, the technological short falls expected in realizing a late 1980's implementation date are examined.