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USGS Awards Contracts for Commercial Satellite Imagery
Released: 6/4/2004

Contact Information:
U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey
Office of Communication
119 National Center
Reston, VA 20192
Tim Saultz 1-click interview
Phone: 573-308-3654

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) announced today the award of multi-year contracts for the acquisition of high-resolution satellite imagery to two US based companies: Space Imaging of Thornton, Colo., and ORBIMAGE, Inc. of Dulles, Va. The contracts estimated at $15 million provide the USGS and its partner agencies with coordinated access to the remote sensing industry’s products and services.

The USGS recognizes that civilian Federal agencies, and their state and local partners, have a wide variety of requirements for data sharing. The mission needs of some agencies can be satisfied with relatively low-cost, limited-use commercial satellite imagery licenses while other agencies need to share data with the broadest possible user community. These contracts offer data licenses ranging from single-organization to public-domain distribution rights at some of the most aggressive pricing ever offered. The contracts have a base period of performance of one year with two additional one-year options.

"These contracts directly support the President’s Commercial Remote Sensing Space Policy, signed in 2003, by providing a centralized mechanism for civil agencies to acquire commercial remote sensing products to support their mission needs in an efficient and coordinated way," said Barbara Ryan, USGS Associate Director for Geography.

These contracts complement those signed last September between the USGS and four commercial companies that provide high-resolution airborne remote sensing data. The Commercial Partnerships Team at the USGS Office in Rolla, Mo., administers the remote sensing contracts in addition to cartographic services contracts with other U.S. firms used for obtaining various kinds of digital geospatial data. According to Ryan, "This team is committed to providing the highest quality products and services at fair and reasonable prices to the USGS and its partner agencies by building and maintaining strong, long-term relationships with the commercial sector."

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