The Ball Aerospace Global Imaging System 2000 provides one-meter class panchromatic and four-meter class multispectral imagery over a broad area.
The QuickBird system is an implementation of the Ball Aerospace Global Imaging System 2000 (BGIS 2000), designed to be an agile, stable and highly accurate Earth remote sensing platform.
The QuickBird 61-centimeter imaging system returns high-resolution, commercial Earth imagery from space. The system collects 61-centimeter class panchromatic and 2.5-meter multispectral stereoscopic data over a large field of view with rapid target selection. The data contributes to mapping, agricultural and urban planning, weather research and military surveillance. QuickBird launched in October 2001 on a Boeing Delta II rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.
Ball Aerospace designed, fabricated, integrated and tested the total space segment consisting of a spacecraft bus and the 61-centimeter imaging instrument.
Originally slated as a 1-meter resolution imaging system, plans were modified by the customer, DigitalGlobe of Longmont, Colorado, to increase the resolution system by adjusting the orbit in which the satellite is flown. As a result, panchromatic resolution increased from 1 meter to 61 centimeters and multispectral increased from 4- to 2.5-meter resolution. This means QuickBird can identify images as small as 2 feet.
Ball Aerospace's High-resolution Camera 60 is an Earth-imaging system that is capable of imaging a strip of the Earth's surface between 14 and 34 kilometers wide.
The satellite operates in a 450-km 98-degree sun-synchronous orbit, with each orbit taking 93.4 minutes.