Enabling the public sector to save money, innovate and make more effective policy decisions by using space technology and data

Case Study: Earth Observation Data Integration Pilot (EO DIP): Overview

General Information

  • Provider: Cloudreach, Environment Systems, RSAC, Airbus, Cascade, Specto Natura, Geoger, APMgeo, British Trust for Ornithology
  • Technology utilised: Earth observation (EO) – optical and radar
  • Thematic area: Environment
  • End user(s): Defra EO Centre of Excellence


  • 2015-16

This project was co-funded by SSGP and the Defra EO Centre of Excellence.

The increased availability of Earth observation (EO) data from Copernicus and improvements in data processing present Defra with an opportunity to use EO to ensure cheaper, more effective, and more customer-focussed delivery.

An EO Roadmap developed with the Space for Smarter Government Programme (SSGP) was published to help Defra realise the unique potential of EO data over the next five years. To meet the Roadmap’s goals, rapid progress is needed in integrating EO in at least five policy areas to demonstrate operational delivery and achievable benefits.

Who is involved?

The project is funded by Defra/SSGP, and managed through the Defra Earth Observation Centre of Excellence by JNCC, FC, EA, NE and RPA. Working with Cloudreach, Environment Systems, RSAC, Airbus, Cascade, Spectronatura, Geoger, APMgeo, and the British Trust for Ornithology.

What is being done?

  • R&D in a number of application areas where priorities to achieve savings have been identified
  • Establishing how three land-based products are shared across applications resulting in additional streamlining and economies of scale
  • Addressing how best to organise supply of data and products as a test of the Defra GI strategy

Added value of an integrated pilot

  • Discovery of shared requirements across operations to achieve more cost-effective delivery
  • Allows greater outputs through integrating multiple data sets across pilot areas
  • Rapid assessment of where future efforts should be focused to deliver the EO Roadmap by testing all aspects from retrieving satellite data to making innovation operation

Next steps

The R&D phase and initial testing has now concluded. Work will continue to make the promising applications operational over the next two years, and to engage with industry to find efficient ways of delivering the products and services that can support multiple applications.