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The overall aim of the Global Monitoring for Environment and Security(GMES) initiative is to support Europe’s goals regarding sustainable development and global governance by providing timely and quality data, information and knowledge. Access to information has strategic value in the development of Nations and regions and will contribute to Europe’s ability to fulfil its role as a world player.

The information delivered by GMES has been defined to serve three main themes: meeting Europe’s environmental obligations; supporting sustainable development; and contributing to the security of citizens. Additionally it needs to ensure the quality and dissemination of the related products in an operational scenario supported by standardised interfaces. In order to achieve these objectives, several studies concerning the evolution of the ground segment and the services to be provided by GMES were commissioned, in addition to the definition studies of the first GMES space missions, the so-called Sentinels.

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The operational aspect is indeed the driving aspect behind these studies. Whereas the precursor missions were meant to develop the measurement techniques and were as such operated in a more scientific/experimental fashion, especially since the related ground and service segments also still had to be developed, it is primordial that a service oriented infrastructure be put in place across European and Canadian data provider.

In this study, the architecture definition focused on the interfaces involving:

  • the ESA missions GS,
  • other European Mission GS, and
  • the static geo-spatial data.

In this schema, the DAIL serves two classes of 'users'

  • the 'operators' of missions, enabling interoperation between the mission GS
  • the 'users' of missions, providing a single entry point to interoperating mission GS


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