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European Flag    Europa The European Commission Research Fifth Framework Programme
Energy, environment and sustainable development

Development of earth observation satellite technologies

A sustainable European facility to observe and monitor Earth from space will greatly enhance our understanding of the planet.


The development of earth observation satellite technologies will broaden our knowledge of the planet, thus facilitating its optimum conservation and management. R&D projects will provide applications, products and services for a wide range of users, especially in Member States, linked to environmental monitoring and management of resources, land use and ecosystems. Work will also focus on integrating earth observation with other relevant technologies such as airborne remote sensing, space telecommunications, navigation and global information systems.

Activities will focus on:

  • pilot applications and methodological research to improve effectiveness of activities in priority EU policy areas;
  • investigations into technical, legal and economic aspects;
  • requirement and feasibility studies to specify new services and missions;
  • preparations for self-sustaining operational service.

In addition, efforts will be made through promotion, education and training to make better use of existing and future earth observation data and information sources.

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