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National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Goddard Space Flight Center

ICESat & ICESat-2

ICESat & ICESat-2


ICESat (Ice, Cloud,and land Elevation Satellite) is the benchmark Earth Observing System mission for measuring ice sheet mass balance, cloud and aerosol heights, as well as land topography and vegetation characteristics. From 2003 to 2009, the ICESat mission provided multi-year elevation data needed to determine ice sheet mass balance as well as cloud property information, especially for stratospheric clouds common over polar areas. It also provided topography and vegetation data around the globe, in addition to the polar-specific coverage over the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets.


The Ice, Cloud,and land Elevation Satellite-2 (ICESat-2) is the 2nd-generation of the laser altimeter ICESat mission (January 13, 2003 to August 14, 2010). ICESat-2 is scheduled for launch in 2018.

Click on logo or here to go to the ICESat-2 website