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Maxar Satellite Imagery: Worldview, GeoEye and IKONOS

DigitalGlobe satellite imagery

Maxar Satellite Imagery

If you want the sharpest satellite imagery in the world, then you should harness the power of Maxar satellite imagery.

To give you a ballpark figure:

Each pixel in a Worldview-3 image is about the size of the home plate on a baseball diamond. That’s about 31 cm.

So instead of being far-sighted, you can see a better and clearer world with some of Maxar’s products.

Worldview Satellite

Worldview satellite

Maxar’s cutting-edge high-resolution satellite carves out ridiculously crisp imagery at 31 cm. In 8 spectral bands, the world all of a sudden becomes clearer.

So how good is Maxar imagery?

There are a couple of ways to find out:

Tap into Maxar’s Open Data Program supports disaster recovery for any sudden major crisis or event. For example, Maxar has assisted in fighting forest fires, assessing earthquake damage, and hurricane relief. As part of Maxar’s Open Data Program, they release imagery into the public domain under a Creative Commons 4.0 license which may include crowdsourced damage assessment.

Further to this, Maxar has product samples available for different parts of the Earth. For example, sample imagery products are more available for Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Stockholm (Sweden), and Washington DC (USA).

If you are just looking to purchase Worldview imagery scenes, the Worldview Viewer application gives you the option to preview and find images in the archive. Maxar also provides base maps, analytical services, precision aerial, maps API, and various other products and services.

IKONOS, Quickbird, and GeoEye Imagery

A satellite marvel in 1999, IKONOS was the first satellite granted a commercial license in America. However, IKONOS-1 never made it to space. IKONOS-2 did and was renamed simply “IKONOS”. IKONOS delivers 4-meter multispectral (RGB, NIR) and 1-meter panchromatic imagery.


The versatile and cost-effective QuickBird satellite acquires high-resolution optical imagery seamlessly from the world. Even though it was decommissioned in 2015, you can dig into its archive images at a cost. While panchromatic images are 61 cm resolution, their multispectral bands (RGB, NIR) are 2.4 meter

Finally, Maxar acquired GeoEye which is so sharp that ecologists have used it to track the animal population. Google had its logo on the side of the rocket and has exclusive access, so there’s no coincidence it is a base map imagery in Google Maps. GeoEye imagery is 41 cm for panchromatic and 1.65 meters for multispectral (RGB, NIR).

READ MORE: The Big List of 50 Satellites

GeoEye Bands

GeoEye consists of 5 spectral bands (panchromatic, blue, green, red, and near-infrared). While the panchromatic band has 0.41 meters resolution, the blue, green, red, and NIR bands are 1.65 meters.

Geoeye Bands

Worldview-2 Bands

Worldview-2 is equipped with nine spectral bands. The coastal aerosol, blue, green, yellow, red, red-edge, and near-infrared (NIR) bands have a ground resolution of 1.85 meters. In contrast, the panchromatic band provides a finer ground resolution of 0.450 meters.

Worldview-2 Bands

Worldview-3 Bands

Worldview-3 features a range of spectral bands including panchromatic, coastal aerosol, blue, green, yellow, red, red edge, near-infrared (NIR), and short-wave infrared (SWIR). The panchromatic band achieves a more precise resolution at 31 cm. The visible and near-infrared (VNIR) bands have a GSD of 1.2 meters, and the short-wave infrared (SWIR) band maintains a GSD of 3.7 meters.

Worldview-3 Bands

Worldview Satellite Timeline

From its different owners to the various launch dates, here is the timeline of the Worldview satellites.

  • 2001: Formation of DigitalGlobe, Inc.
  • 2007: Worldview-1 was launched with only 50cm resolution panchromatic images.
  • 2009: WorldView-2 launched, providing high-resolution imagery and an expanded range of spectral bands.
  • 2014: WorldView-3 launched, equipped with a multi-spectral sensor.
  • 2016: Launch of WorldView-4, designed to provide 31 cm resolution in panchromatic mode and 1.23 m in multispectral mode.
  • 2017: MDA acquired DigitalGlobe, which also operates Radarsat-2 for synthetic aperture radar imagery.
  • 2017: MDA rebranded itself into “Maxar Technologies”.
  • 2019: Due to a gyroscope failure, WorldView-4 was retired.
  • 2024: The launch of WorldView Legion.

Worldview Legion

The next step for Maxar will be WorldView Legion. This group of advanced satellites is set to increase its revisit time with this level of quality.

  • Up to 15 revisits per day
  • 30 cm-class resolution
  • 8-band VNIR multispectral imagery
  • 5 million sq km daily collection capacity

This fleet of six satellites will be able to collect over 5 million square kilometers of imagery per day. It’s set to have a 10-year lifespan in sun-synchronous and mid-inclination orbits.


  • 2024/03/31 – Added WorldView Legion
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  1. Hello, the product samples for Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Stockholm (Sweden) and Washington DC (USA) are available at DigitalGlobe website. But, I could not identify the satellite name that provided these images.

  2. Hi, appreciations to your good work. How can I download Worldview-3 imagery? I could not find it through your article.

  3. Hi, from which satellite and how can I get images for archaeological research and buried cities under the soil?

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