Accessing Landsat on AWS

Jed Sundwall edited this page Mar 18, 2015 · 9 revisions

Landsat on AWS makes each band of each Landsat scene available as a stand-alone GeoTIFF and the scene’s metadata is hosted as a text file.

The data are organized using a directory structure based on each scene’s path and row. For instance, the files for Landsat scene LC81390452014295LGN00 are available in the following location: s3://landsat-pds/L8/139/045/LC81390452014295LGN00/

The “L8” directory refers to Landsat 8, “139” refers to the scene’s path, “045” refers to the scene’s row, and the final directory matches the scene’s identifier, which uses the following naming convention: LXSPPPRRRYYYYDDDGSIVV

  • L = Landsat
  • X = Sensor
  • S = Satellite
  • PPP = WRS path
  • RRR = WRS row
  • YYYY = Year
  • DDD = Julian day of year
  • GSI = Ground station identifier
  • VV = Archive version number

In this case, the scene corresponds to WRS path 139, WRS row 045, and was taken on the 295th day of 2014.

Each scene’s directory includes:

  • a .TIF GeoTIFF for each of the scene’s up to 12 bands (note that the GeoTIFFs include 512x512 internal tiling)
  • .TIF.ovr overview file for each .TIF (useful in GDAL based applications)
  • a _MTL.txt metadata file
  • a small rgb preview jpeg, 3 percent of the original size
  • a larger rgb preview jpeg, 15 percent of the original size
  • an index.html file that can be viewed in a browser to see the RGB preview and links to the GeoTIFFs and metadata files. For instance, the files associated with scene LC81390452014295LGN00 are available at:



A gzipped csv describing all available scenes is available at



If you use the AWS Command Line Interface, you can access the bucket with this simple command:

aws s3 ls landsat-pds

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