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Earth Observation Value Adding Services – Earth Observation Design and Publishing Service

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - EO-VAS (Earth Observation Value Adding Services – Earth Observation Design and Publishing Service)

Reporting period: 2018-02-01 to 2019-01-31

EO-VAS project aims to RESHAPE Earth Observation Value Chain by BREAKING “DOWNSTREAM” component and significantly SIMPLIFYING development and delivery of Earth Observation Adding Value Services (hereafter: EO VAS services).

The major technological delivery of the project - EO-Toolset will be seamlessly connected with Copernicus MIDSTREAM component, exploiting free and open access to Sentinel data. Furthermore, EO-Toolset will:
- Provide users with high level of pre-processed data (Level 2), suitable for immediate time-series analysis.
- Deliver free-of-charge CLOUD solution for DESIGN-ing and PUBLISH-ing of EO VAS.

EO-Toolset will markedly simplify current shape of DOWNSTREAM component, accelerating generation and exposure of new EO VAS by (1) relieving the burden of data pre-processing, (2) by providing free-of-charge toolset for construction of EO processing chains and (3) by delivering completely new commercial channel for EO VAS. New capabilities will significantly shorten EO VAS’s development cycles and provide the means for new EO “downstream players” to smoothly enter the market. In its final consequence, EO-VAS project will result in
(1) increased riches of EO VAS and
(2) general user take-up of EO VAS.

Free and open access to data will stimulate the emergence of new user communities, that previously did not use EO services, as they were considered too expensive, too complex or didn’t generate the required added value.
EO-VAS project progress was significantly (positively) impacted by tremendous interest by our users in the second year of the project. The usage of EO VAS tools in January 2019 was at 68 MIO requests and in February at 94 MIO requests.

After running for more than two years, Sentinel Hub now processes more than three millions requests every day, coming from both publicly available (free) applications (Sentinel Playground, EO Browser) as well as Sentinel Hub subscribed users. The current volume of use and growing number of subscribers are telling us that EO-VAS project progress, which started in first year continued in the second year of the project.

There are currently more than 30.000 registered users. At the time of writing this report there are 1.082 payable and 2.498 trial users, the rest have access to EO Browser. Payable applications are mostly offered by application developers, who are building added value services on top of satellite data, which was precisely the focus of this project.

Milestone 1 - The objective regarding EO-Toolset construction was achieved in full through 16 deliverables planned and delivered in the first reporting period of the project. Perhaps even better evaluation of the success of this objective is that Sentinel Hub is currently processing more than one million requests every day and has made it possible to just about anyone to take a peek in the changes happening to our planet. And, even more importantly, it is powering several commercial 3rd party applications.

Milestone 2 – Initial set of EO Value Adding Services was developed in full with all below described deliverables (Deliverables D2.17 D2.18 D3.2 – D3.6 and D4.1 – D4.3). User manuals were prepared. EO-Toolset has been validated, pre-processing workflows became operational, platform has been rolled out into full operation.

Milestone 3 – EOToolset and Initial set of EO Value Adding Services are available for full commercial exploitation. Demonstration cases have been publicly available (demo areas with full functionality) - Training materials and on-line training system were designed and are operational. Maintenance and support system is in place. Trademark has been registered. The Milestone has been achieved in full with all below described deliverables (Deliverables D4.4 - D4.8).
"EO-VAS is delivering features that are currently unmatched in the world. Revolutionary innovations, coming in several dimensions, promise to change the perception of Earth Observation services by bringing them into everyday real-life usage. Unique features that clearly differentiate EO-VAS project out of currently existing solutions are:
- On-line and free access to EO processing capabilities; EO-Toolset will be the only WEB/Cloud solution offering completely free-of-charge access to EO design capabilities. Design and publishing of EO processing chains (EO VAS) will be free of charge!
- Publishing capabilities are delivering new commercial channel for EO VAS, without any globally existing or comparable alternative! Domain-experts will be offered the only free-of-charge tool, enabling them to start selling their knowledge. Charging in a form of fixed costs (see explanation in chapter 2.2.1) will start only after successful sales of their EO VAS is realised.
- Providing end-users with access to unprecedented richness of EO VAS solutions. Free design & publishing capabilities will act as an accelerator for the birth of new EO VASs. In its mature stage, this will result in enormous richness of services, enabling end-users to choose service that fits their requirements the best. Ease of use, rich variety of available EO VASs, accompanied by comprehensible meta-data info and how-touse
manuals, low cost, on-time info and high added value should attract end users to select EO-Toolset as a preferred window into the world of EO.
- Temporal character; EO-VAS project will be a first specialised and freely available solution for time-series processing of EO data.
- Predefined pre-processed input data; EO-Toolset will be the first solution that will offer out-of-the-box preprocessed products in a form of biophysical indices (Level-2B). Domain experts will find it useful, as it will
eliminate the ""non-interesting"" technical work with spatial data and let them focus into solving their domain challenges.

Our main ambition is for EO-Toolset to become a favourite choice when considering the usage of temporal EO data. Similarly as GoogleEarth assumed a leading role when searching geographical data, we are targeting the same position in the case of temporal based EO VAS. Even more, while GoogleEarth can be considered closed system, EO-Toolset is intended to be widely open to both, service provider and service consumers, all with the ambition to become:
- Virtual market place for EO VAS products. The concept of virtual market place introduces completely NEW BUSSINESS MODEL in the area of EO services = model, benefiting all participants in EO value chain - from
data providers, through service providers to end-users.
- EO VAS innovation hub: by fostering the development of EO services, by becoming a virtual meeting place for the exchange of new ideas and by encouraging experimenting with new approaches and
applications of EO VAS. Availability of EO processing tools and availability of data (Copernicus) should ultimately result in generation of new ideas, finally, all of it resulting in new business opportunities.
- Pre-processing engine for other EO domain services. Full integrability means that EO-Toolset’s biophysical indices or EO-Toolset’s services (EO VASs) can be consumed by any-other EO service to deliver completely new added value. In this way, EO-Toolset’s EO VAS can be complemented with other data (for instance: proprietary in-situ data) and integrated into other processing chains/systems = EO-Toolset becoming a “pre-processing engine” for other systems.
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Figure 1: The position of EO-VAS project in EO market value chain