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Sweden in the Sentinel age

The Swedish National Space Board recently received final reports from Spacemetric and Metria containing analyses and recommendations on how Sweden should respond to the Sentinel satellite missions of the EU/ESA Copernicus programme.

In the study, Spacemetric defined the scope and content of a Collaborative Ground Segment for Sweden (CGSS), an infrastructure to enable Swedish users make best of the opportunity and challenges offered by the Sentinel missions.

The Sentinel-1A mission – based around an imaging radar sensor – was launched in April 2014 and provides all-weather, night-and-day imaging of land, oceans and ice. It will be followed in 2015 by Sentinel-2A, an optical remote sensing satellite for land and coastal-area imaging, and then by Sentinel-3A for ocean and regional land imaging. A second B-series satellite of each type will be launched from 2016. All of the satellites have 7-year operational lifetimes.

A Collaborative Ground Segment for Sweden is an important initiative to derive the most benefit from investments made in the Copernicus programme, and specifically the Sentinel satellites. Member States of the European Space Agency have access to a dedicated Data Hub that provides a temporary repository of the latest Sentinel imagery. But the CGSS would ensure that users in Sweden have effective access to imagery over longer time periods and to products and services suiting specific, national requirements, such as images in Swedish coordinate systems.