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Ground Segment Coordination Body Workshop 2007

09-Jun - 10-Jun 2007

ESA - Esrin-Frascati, Italy

The new Earth observation missions and increased demands from the user community and integrated programmes such as GMES has brought a challenge for Earth Observation satellite operators, Space Agencies and EO data providers to manage the data and to offer the access to the different products as coherently and easily as possible. With the need to allocate available financial resources as carefully as possible but also to handle an increasing number of different missions, a closer cooperation in the ground segment development, the operations and the data exploitation has become a necessity.

ESA's Earth Observation Programme Board (PB-EO) had setup in 2003-2004 a task force that came up with a set of recommendations on how to deal with these challenges in the EO ground segment among ESA member states. Beyond recommendations concerning mission independent design, modularity, competition in the industrial approach, the task force recommended to set-up a 'Ground Segment Coordination Body' (GSCB) of all agencies in member states investing in and managingEarth Observation Payload Data Ground Segments for their national missions.

This group was established in June 2005 and shares the respective expertise in the development and operations of Payload Ground Segments of the major European and Canadian missions contributing to the GMES framework.

GSCB coordinates and shares its findings with other coordination and standardisation entities like CEOS, OGC, INSPIRE and CCSDS; and it schedules regular consultation with industry and earth observation mission operators.

The current major project, accompanied by GCSB is the “Heterogeneous Mission Access” (HMA). HMA guarantees interoperability of mission data catalogue, ordering and data distribution systems in order to allow a seamless and transparent access of all Copernicus relevant earth observation data from Copernicus users and Copernicus service providers.

In order to present the current status of GSCB work and to especially reflect the status of HMA with regard to the currently involved and the potential candidate missions, GSCB conducted a one and half day workshop at ESA ESRIN in Frascati, Italy.

The workshop gave an overview on the status and the current achievements of the GSCB, with an insight view on HMA. It gave room for the mission operators to present their plans and achievements with regard to interoperability, contributing data and information to services for the GMES, (now known as the Copernicus program) and their long-term archive data access and preservation strategy, as well as, to provide active feedback on the GSCB workplan.



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