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Spaceborne imaging sensors provide global coverage of the planet surface on a routine basis. But the resolution of multispectral images may be inadequate for certain applications, especially those crucial for urban objects. A new generation of satellites, such as GeoEye-1, WorldvView-1 Ikonos, QuickBird, and SPOT-5, now offer high-resolution MS and panchromatic (pan) images. Certain data-fusion techniques take advantage of complementary spatial and spectral resolution characteristics to produce enhanced MS observations. More specifically, pan-sharpened images are multispectral images sharpened via the higher-resolution pan image. The former are acquired using coarser resolutions, typically, two or four times lower, owing to signal-to-noise-ratio constraints and transmission bottlenecks. In cases where imagery from different satellites are to be pan-sharpened, such as merging the 25 m multispectral Landsat-5 imagery with 10 m AVNIR-2 imagery, the images first need to be orthorectified to ensure that they exactly co-register with each other. SATPALDA provides adviceon which datasets can be pan-sharpened to ensure you get the best spatial and spectral resolution possible.

Images below show the change in level of detail after sharpening of a multispectral image using higher resolution panchromatic image.