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BalticSatApps successfully promotes Earth Observation for the Baltic Sea Region

“Earth at your fingertips App” by Zero Gravity start up of the BalticSatApps-project.

The BalticSatApps was established to increase awareness about the data provided by the European Union Copernicus Programme, improve access to the data, and stimulate innovation through co-creation and iterative development of methodologies. The project also aimed to develop an acceleration programme focusing on EO business.

The activities of the BalticSatApps project consist of (1) User uptake activities, (2) Promoting innovation in Earth Observation-based services and (3) New business development activities. As a result, a catalogue about services that are based on Copernicus data was prepared. The catalogue focuses on services from the partner countries (Estonia, Finland, Poland, Russia, Sweden). The catalogue is a useful resource for assessing the EO downstream services market in the Baltic Sea Region.

Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) lead the user uptake activities, where potential users along with potential and current domain-wise usage of Copernicus data, were mapped. A gap analysis was conducted by category in order to match EO products and services, both existing and potential new ones, to the needs of industries in the Baltic Sea Region. The results showed that land, climate change and marine are the most demanded application areas for the users of EO data in Finland. In the future, we will see more usage in areas like agriculture, fishery, energy, tourism, natural hazards, and extreme weather events.

In Finland there is a big interest and usage of Copernicus data and services. Especially major institutes such as Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) and Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE) are actively using Copernicus services and provide new services to Finnish community and make them available internationally. Current usage of data and services are for

  • Development of Earth Observation (EO) methods
  • Development of new operational EO services
    • Snow and Ice services in Arctic (Atmospheric phenomena and their interaction with biosphere and cryosphere, Snow covered area, Snow water equivalent, Seasonal frost / thaw, Permafrost, Sea ice cover, Hydrology)
      • Copernicus Global Land Service Cryosphere products
      • BALTIC Sea Ice Monitoring
      • Flood Monitoring
    • Copernicus Land monitoring services in Finland
    • Air Quality
    • Forestry
    • Real Estate
    • Smart City
    • Smart Mobility
    • UV-Radiation and Forecasting
    • Climate services
    • Environmental services
    • Providing satellite image services
  • National Satellite Data Centre providing satellite ground segment and data processing services
  • Copernicus European Space Agency (ESA) Sentinel Collaborative Ground Station

Most of the public institutes are both service providers and users, such as the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI), the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), National Land Survey of Finland (MML) and Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd (VTT). Commercial EO and EO-related services in Finland are increasing rapidly, but still the number of private companies are only a few.

More information:

Dr. Ali Nadir Arslan, ali.nadir.arslan@fmi.fi

Project and results: https://balticsatapps.eu/

Press release by University of Turku:  https://www.utu.fi/en/news/press-release/balticsatapps-successfully-paving-way-for-earth-observation-based-innovations-in

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