Earth Observation

3d illustration of detailed virtual planet Earth. Technological digital globe world

In the field of EO, data providers are adopting open distribution schemes. The Sentinel missions, for example, have a long term operational commitment from ESA and EC. Their open data policy and distribution scheme (meaning that the data are free to acquire and use for everyone) is meant to provide systematic and straightforward access to their observations. This will make them an important asset for research and industry in order to better understand and represent Earth processes. In combination with other available and relevant EO data (open, as well as proprietary), the Sentinel imagery can be leveraged to an even richer source of environmental information.

However, data users often need to inquire about different datasets at different locations, querying various data catalogues. Cross-linking of data across multiple data providers is seldom available, thus increasing the entry barrier for users to make use of the richness of these combined datasets and decreasing the potential added-value. Projects facilitating and driving this important goal are currently being carried out (e.g., but to the consortium’s knowledge, none has reached an elevated state of maturity.

DMA will innovate EO towards infrastructure sharing and scalable multi-user cloud platforms. With this approach, the novel ecosystem developed in DMA closely follows the current ESA and EC strategy, which has started to re-organise the COPERNICUS Sentinel ground segment and downstream activities. Due to the amount of data, ESA promotes the establishment of several federated data warehouses and processing facilities. Furthermore, the combination or linking of geospatial data across multiple platforms plays a key role in the process of lowering the entry barrier to (re-)use DMA data together with open data and increasing the added-value of data and derivatives thereof.

The quality, appropriate encoding and standards compliance of the provided geo-data will be proven in an integrated demonstrator, based on practical scenarios from the subject area of forestry.