Space & Security

Space & Security

Earth observation data for the Space and security domain are currently showing an unprecedented scenario in terms of variety, volume, velocity, veracity and value. Thus the key challenge is to improve the capacity to access and analyse this huge amount of heterogeneous data to timely provide decision-makers with clear and useful information. One of the key products derived from these data sets is related to the identification of changes on the Earth surface. Change detection is an important technique to support the monitoring of urban, built-up and natural environments in order to identify certain features and anomalies over areas of interest as well as the assessment of natural resources.

Within this context, the goals of the Space and Security pilot in NextGEOSS are:


To provide tools for detecting and characterizing changes


To explore methods for extracting information on changes at different scales


To explore methods for extracting information on changes at different scales

The pilot is built on the results of the activities currently performed by SatCen in the framewokr of two Horizon 2020 projects: BigDataEurope) integrating Big Data, Software & Communities for Addressing Europe’s Societal Challenges) and EVER_EST (European Virtual Environment for Research Earth Science Themes).

Quick Facts


The pilot allows the user to execute the provided services on specific area of interest, generally ranging from local to regional level.


The Space and Security pilot foster the exploitation of data from the Sentinel satellites, part of the Copernicus programme, which guarantee open and up-to-date information through a set of services dedicated to security and environmental issues. In particular, Sentinel 1 and Sentinel 2 data are used.


In the Space and Security domain (i.e. to ensure the well being and security of countries and citizens by exploiting suitable space assets) it is crucial to improve the capacity to access and analyze the increasing amount of data produced with high velocity by a variety of sources. One of the main interest in exploiting such data sets in the Space and Security domain is related to the detection of changes on the Earth surface.


The main users to benefit from the pilot are the stakeholders involved in the Earth observation data exploitation for space and security purposes (e.g. decision makers in the EU and its Member States). Moreover, change detection is a transversal issue common to several user communities (e.g. environment, science and humanitarian aid).


The pilot provide processing services (based on a chain of image processing operators mainly from open toolboxes) to identify changes on a specific areas of interest within a time frame selected by the users. As output, the user is able to retrieve and download the file with the detected changes.


The service will be available on the GCI GEOSS and each user will be able to login using its own credentials. The outcome of the service execution will be associated to the specific user profile.