16 March 2021

CSIRO CHILE AND DATA OBSERVATORY SET UP UNPRECEDENTED OPEN DATA PLATFORM FOR THE GLOBAL SATELLITE COMMUNITY

News 
  • The agreement is being carried out through CSIRO -the Australian research agency in Chile- in collaboration with Data Observatory, the Faculty of Engineering and Sciences at Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez, and Amazon Web Services (AWS), and its purpose is to gather open satellite data and make them accessible on a new platform to be used by 34 international space agencies as members of CEOS Committee on Earth Observation Satellites. The platform, financed with funds from NASA, will be launched this year 2021.

Thanks to the Australian research agency, CSIRO, the Data Observatory Foundation, the Faculty of Engineering and Sciences at Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez, and Amazon Web Services (AWS), Chile will manage a unique worldwide platform of satellite data using an Open Data Cube model, with the support of NASA Aeronautics and Space Administration and in service of CEOS, the Committee on Earth Observation Satellites.

The project will develop a platform entitled “Earth Analysis Interoperability Lab (EAIL)” over an 11-month period and will be readily-accessible with advanced data during the year 2021. The venture has been financed by NASA for the benefit of CEOS members, the Committee on Earth Observation Satellites, made up of 34 satellite-related agencies including NASA, ESA and JAXA, from the United States of America, Europe, and Japan, respectively, among others. Data Observatory has worked closely with CSIRO to build the first Data Cube in Chile, and the EAIL project will improve these capabilities even further while they will continue to be a source for leading development capabilities worldwide, with Headquarters based in Chile.

Dr. Orlando Jiménez, Executive Director of CSIRO Chile, explained: “The objective of this platform is to release the open data cube capacity to the CEOS Committee, an international organization in charge of coordinating earth observation satellites around the world. This is an example of Chilean capacity with regards to making an initial contribution at this stage of satellite data globalization, in service of scientific and technological development, and applying them to global issues and public policies that are under construction”.

The projection for the use of capabilities such as these is unlimited, given that the containment of earth and marine satellite observation data has a high impact on agricultural management, tides, vegetation, drought, and other alterations related to climate change such as forest fires, glacier retraction, and the degradation of soil and wetlands.

In fact, studies led by the Government of Australia, as a member of APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation), have determined that Chile has the potential to grow economically by the year 2030 in the amount of 5.2 thousand million dollars thanks to a better use of these earth and marine observation capabilities. (https://www.industry.gov.au/data-and-publications/current-and-future-value-of-earth-and-marine-observing-to-the-asia-pacific-region).

Carlos Jerez, Executive Director of Data Observatory and Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Sciences at Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez, mentioned: “This initiative will make it possible to develop new keys, with the use of satellite data interoperability, for working together on finding solutions that will not get caught up in technological problems and that will allow for the rapid and simple implementation of prospective solutions based on thorough observation at specific locations, hence connecting a global community of over 130 countries”.

In turn, Brian Killough from CEOS Systems Engineering Office (SEO) at NASA Langley Research Center, expressed: “NASA and the SEO at CEOS (Committee on Earth Observation Satellites) are highly interested in working on developing the EAIL platform in Chile with CSIRO and Data Observatory. This important activity will integrate multiple interoperable data sets that use Open Data Cube (ODC) technology to support countries in the Americas. This endeavor will help us by paving the way to acquiring similar approaches in other parts of the world”.

More on Data Observatory

Data Observatory (DO) is a public-private non-profit collaboration created by the Ministry of Economy and the Ministry of Science, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez (UAI), with the mission to acquire, process, store and deliver datasets that contribute to the development of science, technology, innovation, knowledge and the economy due to their volume, nature and complexity. More information at dataobservatory.net.

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