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TMCNet:  Honeywell unit wins new 6-year contract for Landsat programme

[February 20, 2013]

Honeywell unit wins new 6-year contract for Landsat programme

Feb 20, 2013 (AIRLINE INDUSTRY INFORMATION via COMTEX) -- US aerospace firm Honeywell (NYSE: HON) said that its Honeywell Technology Solutions unit was awarded a new six-year contract for the continued flight operations for Landsat 7 after managing the Landsat program for the past 12 years.

The Landsat programme was launched to provide satellite imagery of the Earth, and had its origins in the 1972 launch of the Earth Resources Technology Satellite. Landsat operations were transferred from NASA to the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric aministration in 1979.

Since its launch in 1984, Landsat 5 has provided more than 600,000 individual images, recording clear-cutting and recovery conditions of rain forests, near- and long-term effects of the Chernobyl explosion, before-and-after records of Hurricane Katrina's impact, as well as more subtle natural and human-induced changes to the global land surface.

In addition to these emergency and management applications of Landsat imagery, millions of people each day use web-based mapping products supported by this and other imagery data to get where they want to go.

Honeywell said its new mission and data management processes anticipate and rectify anomalies and have saved the US Geological Survey, the managing organisation of the Landsat satellites, USD 9m over the past 12 years.

In addition, HTSI said it has extended the Landsat 5's original three-year mission to 29 years and kept the Landsat 7 operationally viable.

Under the new six-year contract HTSI will continue to manage both the Landsat 5 and Landsat 7 satellite programs while adding new tasks such as on-orbit flight operations and technical services for the Landsat 5 and Landsat 7 satellites and ustaining engineering for each spacecraft, helping to keep the spacecraft operationally longer.

HTSI will also assist the USGS with the safe decommissioning of Landsat 5 by lowering it from its orbiting altitude of 705 kilometers and mitigating risk to nearby US and international Earth-observing satellites.

The firm said that its flight operations team has already completed Phase 1 of the decommissioning by successfully lowering Landsat 5's orbit by 20 kilometers in two delta velocity maneuvers.

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