Collecting and analyzing Geospatial Information

RapidEye (Optical satellite)

The RapidEye satellite is characterized by its ability to capture wide-area images, undertake high-frequency imaging, as well as ability to acquire high-resolution multispectral images. The constellation of five satellites covers five bands and boasts a resolution of 5m. Its powerful capabilities are fully demonstrated in wide-area, high-frequency imaging. In particular, image products have been developed to satisfy the needs of international organizations in the agriculture and forestry sectors, and these products help farm operators and forest managers make decisions in a prompt and timely manner.

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 High cost performance 5m resolution
High cost performance 5m resolution

SpotLight mode Location: Watarase Yusuichi
Extensive volume of information


■High cost performance 5m resolution

RapidEye provides ortho satellite images with resolution of 5m.
Compared to high-resolution images such as images captured by GeoEye-1, the price of a RapidEye image per surface area unit is very reasonable. The unit price of an archived image covers the license for a single organization. In the case of an order for the minimum continuous surface area of 1,000km2 (approximately half of Tokyo), the unit price is 220 yen⁄km2. The purchase price for an image of this size would therefore be as low as 220,000 yen. Our pricing is ideal for customers that require wide-area images.

■The five-satellite system images at a high frequency over large areas

The five-satellite constellation is able to image the same area every day. This allows for prompt response during times of emergency or in unforeseen circumstances. The RapidEye is capable of covering more than 5 million km2 of area per day, with each satellite acquiring Earth surface data for a maximum area of approximately 110,000km2 (77 km width × 1,500 km length) with each imaging (one pass). By harnessing the excellent imaging capability of the RapidEye, we have succeeded in archiving image data for over 1.8 billion km2 of surface area in the past two years.

■Extensive volume of information (five-band multispectral sensor)

The RapidEye satellite is the first commercial satellite in the world to have a Red-Edge band. The Red-Edge band mounted on the RapidEye is positioned between the Red band and the Infrared band. It is able to acquire high-resolution data through a 12 bit dynamic range (4,096 gradations).
The high-frequency imaging and extensive volume of image data can be utilized in monitoring and analysis activities in the agriculture and forestry sectors. It can also be applied to the survey of distribution of vegetation, classification of tree species, and medical checkups.


- Orthoimage (Level 3A) -

This is a wide range of application products, aimed at customers that wish to make use of accurate position information and map projection image data. These products have been subject to radiometric correction, sensor correction, geometric correction, and map projection. DEM of 30 to 90 m mesh is used in geometric correction. Although ground control points (GCP) are used when producing all images, product precision differs for each region.


Basic project (Level 1B)

These products are targeted at customers that possess advanced image processing techniques. Although these products have been subjected to radiometric and sensor correction, they have not undergone map projection. The image data has been resampled based on the coordinate system defined by the ideal basic camera model for each band, and the necessary satellite telemetry data is included for geometric correction.


New acquisition

We take orders for new image acquisition for areas in Japan and overseas, for customers who wish to acquire new images. An image fee will be charged on top of the image price. Please inquire separately with regard to imaging conditions and criteria

Type of Imaging Imaging period Cloud coverage Premium rate
Standard Beyond 45 days 20% None
  • Separate quotations will be provided if required, for imaging periods of 44 days and below, and cloud coverage below 20%.
  • In principle, orders will be taken up to five working days before the start of imaging.
  • Customers will be required to purchase the images even if the target object is obscured by clouds, as long as the overall cloud coverage lies within the specified range.
  • Please refer to the relevant product specifications on our website with regard to points to note on the detection of cloud cover.
  • We do not accept specific requests for the satellite used for imaging, and for the imaging angle.
  • The acquisition date will be fixed by RapidEye in consideration of the weather conditions, season, and booking situation for the target area.
  • Due to factors such as the booking situation, we may not be able to carry out imaging during periods specified by customers. We seek your kind understanding on this point.
  • In principle, we do not accept changes to the processing contents for image products for orders placed by customers. Changes in imaging conditions and criteria, as well as cancellations, will be treated the same way
  • Imaging will be concluded in the event that images are acquired below the cloud coverage range during the imaging period. Customers will be required to purchase images acquired below the cloud coverage range during the imaging period, even if the images do not satisfy the surface area criteria for which the order was placed.

Points to Note when Purchasing Images

RapidEye data may only be used upon the customer's agreement to the "RapidEye End-User License Agreemet" and "RapidEye Satellite Projects General Conditions"

Copyright Notice

All RapidEye data and derivative products must clearly show the following copyright notices in pursuant to "RapidEye End-User License Agreemet" and "RapidEye Satellite Projects General Conditions"
"includes material© (Year) RapidEye S.á r.l. All rights reserved"

Rapid Eye Sample Images

Location: Chiba
Location: Chiba

Location: Tochigi
Location: Tochigi

Rapid Eye Satellite specifications

Operating organization Rapid Eye AG. (Germany)
Satellite manufacturer Surrey Satellite Technology, Ltd. (UK)
Launched August 24, 2008
Designed lifetime 7 years
Repeat cycle 5.5 day (at nadir)
Revisit time Dailly
Inclination 97.8°
Type of Orbit Sun-synchronous orbit
Orbit Altitude 630 km
Equator Crossing Time 11:00 am approximately (local time)
Image bands Blue...440~510 nm
Green...520~590 nm
Red...630~685 nm
Red Edge...690~730 nm
NIR...760~850 nm
Ground sampling distance 6.5 m (nadir)
Pixel size 5 m (Orthorectified)
Swath width 77 km
On board data storage Up to 1500 km of image data per orbit
Camera dynamic range 12 bit
Scanning direction Meridional direction
Spacecraft roll angle (Pointing) ±25°
Sensor type Multi-spectral push broom imager
Satellite mass 150 kg (bus + payload)
Period 96.7minutes
Image capture capacity 5 Million km2/day
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