Five complementary experiments designed to return the maximum information from ocean surfaces were onboard:
The Seasat SAR operated for 105 days until October 10, 1978, when a massive short circuit in the satellite electrical system ended the mission. During Seasat operations, approximately 42 hours of data were collected.
|Satellite Altitude||800 km|
|Radar Frequency||1.275 GHz (L-band)|
|Radar Wavelength||23.5 cm|
|System Bandwidth||19 MHz|
|Theoretical Resolution on the Surface||25 m (azimuth) x 25 m (range)|
|Number of Looks||4|
|Swath Width||100 km|
|Antenna Dimensions||10.74 m x 2.16 m|
|Antenna Look Angle||20 degrees from vertical|
|Incidence angle on the surface||23 degrees +/- 3 degrees across the swath|
|Polarization||Horizontal transmit, Horizontal receive (HH)|
|Transmitted Pulse Length||33.4 microseconds|
|Pulse repetition frequency (PRF)||1463-1640 Hz|
|Transmitted peak power||1.0 kW|
|Data recorder bit rate (on the ground)||110 Mbits/s (5 bits/word)|
JPL Public Information Office - The Seasat Mission
All the Seasat data were acquired digitally and most of the data were optically processed to survey data products. These products are available on 70 mm film. The Seasat swath width of 100 km was processed into four 25 km wide products at JPL. Only a small percentage of the data were digitally processed; these products contain the complete 100 km wide swath of data.
The Seasat digital processor operated at JPL from 1978 to 1982. Approximately 10% of the total Seasat data set were processed to precision data before the processor was turned off. JPL currently has no capability to process additional Seasat data.
All of the data that were processed are archived at JPL. Digital data are available as byte products on 9 track 6250 bpi CCT or as 8 x 10 black and white prints, positive transparencies, or duplicate negatives. The photo products are approximately 1:500,000 scale.
For more information contact the JPL Radar Outreach Program
Selected portions of the Seasat data set were processed at the facilities listed below.
NOAA/NESDIS Satellite Data Services Division Princeton Executive Square, Rm. 100 5627 Allentown Road Camp Springs, MD 20746 301-763-8402
Seasat SAR signal data collected over Europe and received at the station at Oakhanger, United Kingdom (UKO) were also processed in Europe and are available there. Inquiries can be directed to:
ESRIN - Earthnet Program Office Via Galileo Galilei 00044 Frascati Italy Ph. 39-6-941-80-600 Fax 39-6-941-80-510
Approximately 70 images of 40 x 40 km Seasat scenes collected over Canada were also processed by MacDonald Dettweiler and Associates of Richmond, British Columbia, Canada. These scenes are archived at, and questions should be directed to:
Canada Centre for Remote Sensing
Satellite Acquisition Services Order Desk
588 Booth Street
Ottawa, Ontario CANADA K1A 0Y7
Tel: (613) 995-4057
Fax: (613) 992-0285