The Significance of Resolution

Landsat ETM Image. Resolution of 28.5 m/pixel. Source: NASA.
ASTER Image. Resolution of 15m/pixel. Source: USGS and Japan ASTER Program.
SPOT Panchromatic Image. Resolution of 10m/pixel. Source: U.S. National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency.
CORONA Image. Resolution of ca. 2 m/pixel. Source: USGS.
Aerial Photograph. Resolution of ca. 1 m/pixel. Source: Hartmut Kühne and Joan Oates.
Digital Globe QuickBird Image. Resolution of 0.6 m/pixel. Source: Google.

Resolution describes an image’s ability to show detail. At Tell Brak, for example, CORONA’s two-meter resolution shows the mound’s terrain, tracks, and even old excavations, features which are not visible in other types of satellite imagery such as Landsat, ASTER or SPOT. Higher resolution images such as aerial photographs or QuickBird imagery can show even more detail.