Vertex Getting Started User Guide

  • If you do not already have one, create a free Earthdata Login account at
  • Log in by clicking the Sign in icon in the top right of the window. Use your Earthdata Login username and password.
  • Search Type allows you to choose between Geographic Search and List Search.

Geographic Search Options

  • The Vertex map defaults to Satellite View
  • Navigate to your area of interest by dragging the map while holding down the left mouse button.
  • By default, the map-drawing tool is a bounding box. Click on the map once to specify the starting corner, move the mouse, then click again to finish the box. Additional drawing tool options are available in the toolbar at the top of the screen, including point, linestring, and polygon options.
    • Point allows you to define an area of interest by clicking on the map to place a point.
    • Line allows you to define an area of interest over a series of line segments by clicking on the map multiple times. Double-click to stop adding segments.
    • Polygon allows you to define an area of interest over an arbitrary polygon. You will receive an error message at the bottom of the window if there was a problem with the polygon (self-intersecting, reversed polygon winding order, etc.).
    • Box allows you to define an area of interest over a lat/long-aligned bounding box by clicking once to set one corner, and again to set the opposite corner.
    • Once a shape has been drawn, select the Edit current area of interest icon on the toolbar to move, add, and delete points. Select the Draw new area of interest icon to create a new AOI.
  • Dataset enables you to choose the dataset of interest.
    • If you need more information about a particular dataset, click on the appropriate icon in the Dataset selector.
  • Area of Interest gives you the option of importing an area of interest as a geospatial file or by entering a set of geographic coordinates.
    • Click on the down arrow next to Area of Interest in the top menu
    • Click the Import Area of Interest button in the Options window
    • Click Select Files and navigate to a folder on your computer, or drag and drop files into the box. GeoJSON, shapefiles, and kml files are supported provided they are in a latitude/longitude-based coordinate system, such as WGS84.
      • When importing a GeoJSON file, all geometries in the file will be included. If multiple geometries are found, a convex hull will be used to represent them in the search.
      • Shapefiles can be either a single .shp file, multiple shapefile components (.shp, .shx, .dbf), or a zip file containing one or more shapefile components. At a minimum, the .shp component must be included in all cases.
    • An area of interest may also be defined by a set of coordinates entered in the Options window.
      • Coordinates should be entered as decimal degrees in well-known text (WKT) format. Coordinates entered as a comma-separated long/lat string (e.g. -97.38,36.46,-53.44,36.46…) will be automatically converted by Vertex to WKT format.
  • At any time you can clear your search area by clicking the Clear button in the header.
  • Search dates are optional, so they default to empty.  If you are searching for specific dates, you can define the date range further in the Start Date and End Date fields. The date picker will automatically constrain your selection to a valid range for the selected dataset. Note: this information may also be found by clicking on for a dataset.
  • Filters… enables you to further refine your search
    • Path and Frame Filters are available for select datasets. You may enter a single path or frame, or a range. Due to inconsistent Sentinel-1 framing, we recommend searching for a frame of interest by ±1-2 frames.
    • Seasonal Search allows constraining the search to certain annual periods within an overall range of dates.  Click the Seasonal Search toggle and additional options will appear, allowing you to enter an overall date range (Start Date/End Date) and the seasonal range (Season Start Day/Season End Day).
    • Additional Filters allow for additional parameters to be applied to narrow your search and reduce the number of results. Not all filters will be available for all datasets.
      • File Type – Limit the search to specific types of files. Multiple selections allowed.
      • Beam Mode – Limit the search to specific beam modes. Multiple selections allowed.
      • Polarization – Limit the search to specific polarizations. Multiple selections allowed.
      • Direction – Limit the search to a specific orbit direction.
      • Campaign Selector – If a dataset is selected that supports this option, a campaign selector will be available. Only one selection is allowed. Currently, S1 InSAR (BETA), UAVSAR, and AIRSAR support this option.
  • Once all parameters have been chosen, click SEARCH. Search results will appear in the footer area of the Vertex window, and on the map.
    • Note: The number of files that are predicted to match the current search parameters is displayed under the SEARCH button. If there are no predicted matches, the search button will be greyed out and display NO RESULTS.

List Search Options

  • Selecting List Search opens the Scene List Search window and allows you to enter a list of scenes or file names.
    • Scene allows searching for specific scene names (granule names), and the results will include any files that are part of those scenes.
    • File allows searching for specific file names (product names), and the results will only include exactly those files.
  • Edit List – Opens the Scene List Search window so you can make changes to your list
  • Once all parameters have been chosen, click SEARCH. Search results will appear in the footer area of your browser window, and on the map.
    • Note: The number of files that are predicted to match the current search parameters is displayed under the SEARCH button. If there are no predicted matches, the search button will be greyed out and display NO RESULTS.

Search Results

  • Note: In Vertex, a scene is considered to be a package containing all files, or products, that are related to a specific location and time.

For example, the column on the left of the Results panel displays the scenes returned from a search. The column on the right displays the file contents of a scene.

  • A list of scene names and acquisition times that were returned from a search are displayed in the leftmost column of the Results panel.
  • The maximum number of files that a search will return is displayed under the SEARCH button.
    • This number can be adjusted by clicking on the down arrow.  
    • The total number of files that match the search parameters is also displayed.
  • The Scenes column (left).
    • Click on the cart icon next to a scene name to add all the scene’s files to the download queue. The cart changes appearance when this is done.
    • Click on the zoom icon next to a scene name to zoom-in to the scene’s location on the map.
  • To view more information about a scene, click on the scene in the left column and the Scene Detail and Files columns will populate.
    • The Scene Detail column (center) provides a more detailed description of the scene, including Start Date/Time, Beam Mode, Path, Frame, Flight Direction, Polarization, Absolute Orbit, and a browse image. Not all scenes will have all the extra information.
      • The Baseline Tool button opens the ASF Baseline Tool, which is used for the creation of InSAR stacks.
      • The Citation button opens a new window with citation guidance for published works using data, imagery, or tools accessed through ASF.
      • The More Like This button creates a search based on the selected scene’s path and frame.
    • The Files column (right) displays a list of files available for the currently selected scene. You may download files immediately or add them to your download queue by clicking on the appropriate icon.

Download Queue

  • Clicking on the cart icon in the header, labeled Downloads, will display the contents of your current download queue.
    • Within the download queue, the list of files you have selected to download is displayed with some basic information on each file, such as file type and size.
      • File IDs (names) can be copied
      • Files can be individually downloaded
      • Items can be removed from the queue
    • Clear Queue will clear all files from the queue. The option Restore Queue will be displayed if you wish to undo this action.
    • Copy File IDs will copy the file names of all files in the queue for use elsewhere. For example, this list could then be pasted into the Scene List Search window.
    • Data Download – Is used to download multiple products, with either the Download Python Script (.py) option or Metalink (metalink) file option.
    • Metadata Download – Is used to export the contents of the download queue to a CSV, KML, or GeoJSON file. The KML and GeoJSON files provided by this feature are compatible with the Geographic Search Import feature.

Saving Vertex Searches

  • You can save the coordinates of a search so they can be used to exactly recreate an area of interest in later searches.
    • Once the Area of Interest has been set, mouse over the coordinates. A Copy to clipboard icon will appear. Click on the icon and paste the coordinates into a new search or to a text file for later use.
  • All the parameters used in a search can be shared with others or copied and used again.
    •   Click on the horizontal bars menu next to the Sign in icon and select an option.
  • The search parameters will be saved in a URL that can be pasted into a browser search bar to recreate the search exactly.

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