The opportunity and challenge of building a Planetary Digital Twin

The opportunity and challenge of building a Planetary Digital Twin

Prototyping and modelling are very much the norm among innovators and advanced manufacturers, as they offer extensive testing and refinement opportunities, vital when fiddling with novel, high impact technologies. But what if modelling could help humanity better understand Earth’s complex ecosystem and the different components at play? Introducing “Digital Earth”: concept, next steps, and opportunities. More than twenty years ago, U.S. Vice-President Al Gore articulated a vision of “Digital Earth” as a multi-resolution, three-dimensional representation…

Swift as the wind: current and upcoming trends in the wind energy sector

Swift as the wind: current and upcoming trends in the wind energy sector

Increasingly frequent, there is news about renewable energy (RE) overtaking traditional energy sources. In the first half of 2020, and for the first time ever this ground-breaking milestone has been achieved: more electricity in Europe was generated from renewable sources than from fossil fuels. But does this signal a “wind of change”? To assess this, we look into the future development of the field, with particular attention to the wind energy sector, and the upcoming…

Navigating the landscape of EO platforms

Navigating the landscape of EO platforms

The first images of Earth from space were taken in 1946 from aboard a V-2 rocket sent to space by the United States. They had no market as such, but less than two decades later the first weather satellites sent their images back to Earth. Ever since, the amount of satellites, of the data they capture, and the applications and business models they serve has vastly increased. To be able to make use of this…

Policy, market and technology trends in EO-assisted water resource management

Policy, market and technology trends in EO-assisted water resource management

A lot of the recent technological and market developments in the realm of Earth Observation (EO)-assisted water resource management evolve in parallel with European policies where EO can have an impact. These are legislations such as the Water Framework Directive (WFD), the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD), and the Floods Directive. The close relation between policy, market and technology can be seen within each of the e-shape pilots involved in Water resources management. Pilot 5.1…

Renewable energy and Earth Observation: photovoltaics in the centre of solar-related market, policy and technology trends.

Renewable energy and Earth Observation: photovoltaics in the centre of solar-related market, policy and technology trends.

This contribution is the first from a series of articles dedicated on the use of Earth observation (EO) within the Renewable Energy (RE) sector. While we will continue exploring different sub-sectors of RE, for now we focus exclusively on solar energy. The drying-up of non-renewable energy resources and the need to cut emissions and minimise as much as possible the negative anthropogenic impact that led to climate change, has caused many debates. As a result,…

Common Agricultural Policy – Driver and Beneficiary of Earth Observation solutions

Common Agricultural Policy – Driver and Beneficiary of Earth Observation solutions

The production of food, development of rural communities, and environmentally sustainable farming are all high on the agenda of the European Union (EU). Policies and support mechanisms for agriculture aim, among other, to secure the sufficient and sustainable production of safe food, employment and innovation in the sector, and a positive impact on linked communities and the economy at large. The EU’s common agricultural policy (CAP) is a partnership between agriculture and society, and between…