This paper describes a study effort whose objective is to investigate the impact of hyperspectral compression on the utility of the compressed and subsequently reconstructed data for nonliteral exploitation. The goal is to investigate and quantify the extent of degradation introduced by compression that can be tolerated for various exploitation applications in order to establish acceptable compression bit rates. Two nonliteral exploitation functions were performed on the original and compressed-reconstructed image cubes produced by two hyperspectral compression algorithms at four compression bit rates on two scenes. The results showed that, in general, no appreciable degradation in exploitation performance occurred between the compressed- reconstructed and original hyperspectral data sets using these two compression algorithms. The highly encouraging results indicate that compression technology may be a viable means to significantly alleviate transmission data rate limits.