Image from TERRA
Wed, 22 Jul 2020 12:01 EDT

NASA’s Terra satellite captured this image of fires wreaking havoc across a large swath of Siberia on July 21, 2020.

Image from TERRA
Fri, 17 Jul 2020 11:00 EDT

Puerto Rico now has an air quality warning system that provides three days of advance notice about potentially harmful dust that travels across the Atlantic Ocean from the Sahara Desert.

Image from TERRA
Wed, 15 Jul 2020 10:35 EDT

NASA’s Terra satellite captured this image of California’s Mineral fire with the MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) instrument on July 14, 2020.

About Terra

Approximately the size of a small school bus, the Terra satellite carries five instruments that take coincident measurements of the Earth system:

Terra is in a circular sun-synchronous polar orbit that takes it from north to south (on the daylight side of the Earth) every 99 minutes.

Spacecraft Quick Facts:
  • Launch Date: December 18,1999
  • Size: the spacecraft bus is 6.8 m long and 3.5 m across.
  • Weight: 5,190 kg (11,442 lbs.) at launch.

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Orbit Quick Facts: 
  • Altitude: 705 kilometers (438 miles) above Earth’s surface
  • Inclination: 98.5 degrees
  • Period: 99 minutes (16 orbits per day)
  • Equatorial crossing: 10:30 a.m., descending mode

Terra Status:

  • Operating instruments: ASTER, CERES, MODIS, MISR, and MOPITT are operating well.  ASTER Short Wave Infrared (SWIR) data is unavailable.
  • Current life expectancy: Terra  has far exceeded its design life and has a strong chance of operating successfully into the early 2020s.
  • Current systems issues: None.
  • Processed Terra data are available through several NASA data centers.