Project results are expected to contribute to the following expected outcomes:
- Enhanced quality and efficiency of the Copernicus Land Monitoring service to respond respectively to several Green Deal policy and/or user requirements, including those related to the EU mission: "Climate neutral and smart cities", and to technological developments.
- Development of efficient and reliable new products chains, calling for new paradigms in data fusion, data processing and data visualisation essential for the Copernicus Land Monitoring Service to handle more high-volume satellite data sets and product sets. The baseline is to preserve continuity of what has been achieved while keeping the service modern and attractive.
- Development of efficient and reliable integrated products chains, calling with a holistic approach for better land use planning and hydrological monitoring and forecasting, combining and assimilating the current Copernicus service products, in particular the existing continental and global scale hydrological monitoring and forecasting systems of the Copernicus Emergency Management and Climate Change services (CEMS & C3S), and the potential development of new state of the art products complementing the existing ones.
- Development of a common leading-edge approach across services, and in the area of hydrological modelling serving the interests of various applications including agriculture, navigation, energy, flood prevention, and considering also hydrological climate change monitoring, assimilation of hydrological fluxes at the land-sea interface in ocean models, inland water river monitoring and forecasting (short term forecasting and climate monitoring). The development should consider cross services approaches and all relevant Copernicus service products, in particular the existing continental and global scale hydrological monitoring and forecasting systems of the Copernicus Emergency Management and Climate Change services (CEMS & C3S).
- Development of new algorithms and processing chains (e.g. data fusion, combination, assimilation, into monitoring and forecasting models) preparing also for the use of the new types of space observation data (being from new Sentinels or other contributing missions) should also be envisaged allowing the implementation of new products or the improvement of existing products.
The areas of R&I are:
- the development of new and innovative methods to integrate the current land products into land surface, land use and cover change, and more sophisticated land planning and allocation models for different environment, including through cross services approaches and using all relevant Copernicus service products, and thus extending the potential limited uptake of land product into land planning decisions, offering new dimensions and new interests for Copernicus land products. In addition, the project should demonstrate the added value of Copernicus land service products when they are integrated and/or assimilated into the models.
- the development of an integrated, harmonized and coherent product provision system making use of new and innovative methods and observations (e.g.; SWOT mission) to improve the portfolio of the current inland and coastal/shore hydrological satellite observation products with more sophisticated and/or new products, in order to improve global scale hydrological monitoring and forecasting. The development should consider cross services approaches and all relevant Copernicus service products. It should extend the uptake (incl. assimilation) of inland water satellite observation product into hydrological models, consider a consistent approach to hydrological modelling for different purposes (e.g. continental water monitoring under climate change, improved flood and drought forecasting, support to water applications in sectors such as agriculture and energy, forcing coastal models) and offering new dimensions and new interests for Copernicus land, inland and coastal water products. In addition, the project should demonstrate the added value of Copernicus water satellite observation products when they are integrated and/or assimilated into models based on scientific quality validation approaches.
A proposal should address only one area, which must be clearly identified.
The projects should take into account the existing services and clearly define to what extent the services will be improved with new elements or products, including the use of enhanced models, algorithms, tools and techniques to generate new product(s). The projects should build, where possible and relevant, on open-source models, tools and datasets already used or produced by the existing Copernicus services.
Proposals are expected to provide tangible results (new or improved products or service elements) for the Copernicus service. The proposed research and development should be modular and scalable and should support the automatization of different processes orchestration. The project should provide a proof-of-concept (e.g. system element targeting TRL5-6) at least demonstrating the feasibility of the integration in the existing core service. The activities of the project should also contribute to the objectives set by the Group on Earth Observation and outcomes and relevant results of the project should be promoted also at international level through the Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS).
Additionally, the transfer of research results to possible operations should receive active attention during the project to strengthen the readiness for an operational deployment in the future. Appropriate interaction with the relevant Entrusted Entity of the Copernicus services, the conditions for making available, for re-using and exploiting the results (including IPR) by the said entities must be addressed during the project implementation. Software should be open licensed.
Applicants are advised to consult information on the Copernicus programme in general at https://www.copernicus.eu/en and further details on the topic in the Guidance document.
In this topic the integration of the gender dimension (sex and gender analysis) in research and innovation content is not a mandatory requirement.
Specific Topic Conditions:
Activities are expected to achieve TRL 5-6 by the end of the project – The reference TRL definition is the ISO 16290:2013 applicable to the space sector.