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Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SPA.2012.1.1-05 | Award Amount: 2.91M | Year: 2013

The objective of the LOTUS project is to support the development of GMES by developing applications of Sentinel-3 to complete the space observation infrastructure that are designed for land and ocean monitoring for GMES. Sentinel-3 is the GMES space component for monitoring the oceans. The SRAL instrument onboard Sentinel-3 is a radar altimeter that will provide observations of sea-surface and land-ice topography, in continuation of altimeter missions such as ENVISAT, Jason-1 and Jason-2. Furthermore, the SRAL instrument will operate in a SAR mode and provide along-track high-resolution heights of the sea surface in the open oceans, in the coastal seas, in-land water and sea ice areas. The SAR capability is a new feature and no data products based on this SAR mode data are provided or used operationally. New methodologies and new data processing chains need to be developed to prepare the take-up of the GMES Sentinel-3 data. The LOTUS project will develop new methodologies, data processing chains, and applications of the SAR mode data for the high resolution sea surface heights, wave heights and wind speeds in the open oceans, coastal seas as well as in sea ice covered regions for operational marine services. For the operational land services, the LOTUS project will develop new methodologies, data processing chains, and applications of the SAR mode data for the in-land water levels in rivers and lakes, soil moisture, and snow depths. In turn, the new products based on the SAR mode data will support operational services for emergency response and security in the events of, e.g., storm surges and flooding. The new land products will provide valuable information about the hydrological cycle and support services on monitoring hydrological parameters for climate change. Through a strong involvement of innovative companies and SMEs the LOTUS project will stimulate new commercial activities in the value-adding sectors.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2012.6.5-1 | Award Amount: 6.97M | Year: 2012

WeSenseIt will develop a citizen-based observatory of water, which will allow citizens and communities to become active stakeholders in information capturing, evaluation and communication. We propose: (i) data collection: (a) a first hard layer consisting of low-cost, static and portable devices that sense and transfer water information when automatically monitored or when initiated by citizens from their mobile devices; (b) a second soft layer consisting of techniques to harness citizens Collective Intelligence, i.e. the information, experience and knowledge embodied within individuals and communities, both in terms of enabling direct messages to the authorities (with mobile-phone pictures, messages, etc.) and in terms of crowd-sourcing (e.g. by mining social networks like Twitter and Facebook, as well as bulletin boards, RSS feeds, etc.). (ii) the development of descriptive and predictive models and decision-making tools integrating sensor and citizen-based data; the data suppliers (physical sensors or people) are seen as nodes of an integrated heterogeneous data collection network which undergoes progressive multi-objective optimization and tuning. (iii) two-way feedback and exchange of environmental knowledge/experience between citizens and authorities for decision-making and governance within an e-collaboration framework ,enabling improved transparency, knowledge management, accountability and responsiveness, as well as facilitating participation in water management. We will test, experiment and demonstrate the citizen observatory of water in three different case studies in water management with civil protection agencies in UK, NL and Italy. The topic is the entire hydrologic cycle with a major focus on variables responsible for floods and drought occurrences. The project results have the potential to fundamentally change the traditional concept of environmental monitoring and forecasting, as well as models of governance.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: IA | Phase: EO-1-2015 | Award Amount: 2.13M | Year: 2016

The overall objective of APOLLO is to develop a commercial platform that will provide a suite of farm management advisory services specifically designed to address the needs of small farmers. APOLLO will use state-of-the-art methodologies for the calculation of agricultural parameters based on EO data, taking advantage of the improved spatial and temporal coverage of the new Sentinels. APOLLO will produce data on agricultural parameters through available EO, meteorological, and auxiliary data. Especially for the calculation of soil moisture, SAR images will be used for the first time with Sentinel-1, making it possible to obtain maps with a spatial and temporal resolution not achievable before. Based on the agricultural parameters calculated, a suite of farm management services (tillage scheduling, irrigation scheduling, crop growth monitoring, and crop yield estimation) will be developed, and will be delivered through a web and mobile interface. The service requirements will be elaborated in close collaboration with end users. APOLLO services will be cost-effective and affordable, thanks to access to free and open Copernicus data, an automated processing chain for the delivery of agricultural variables, independence from the need for ground-based sensors, and the pioneering use of Sentinel-1 data for estimating soil moisture information. The APOLLO platform and business case will be validated through pilot testing in Spain, Greece, and Serbia, with the participation of small farmers, agricultural consultants, farmers associations, and SMEs providing farm management services. A business strategy for the take-up of APOLLO will be developed, assessing the operational sustainability of the platform based on market revenues. According to the preliminary business plan developed, APOLLO has the potential for a Return On Investment (ROI) of 18% - 51% in 3 years (for the low and high uptake scenario, respectively).

Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: SC5-16-2014 | Award Amount: 15.99M | Year: 2015

Terrestrial and marine ecosystems provide essential services to human societies. Anthropogenic pressures, however, cause serious threat to ecosystems, leading to habitat degradation, increased risk of collapse and loss of ecosystem services. Knowledge-based conservation, management and restoration policies are needed to improve ecosystem benefits in face of increasing pressures. ECOPOTENTIAL makes significant progress beyond the state-of-the-art and creates a unified framework for ecosystem studies and management of protected areas (PA). ECOPOTENTIAL focuses on internationally recognized PAs in Europe and beyond in a wide range of biogeographic regions, and it includes UNESCO, Natura2000 and LTER sites and Large Marine Ecosystems. Best use of Earth Observation (EO) and monitoring data is enabled by new EO open-access ecosystem data services (ECOPERNICUS). Modelling approaches including information from EO data are devised, ecosystem services in current and future conditions are assessed and the requirements of future protected areas are defined. Conceptual approaches based on Essential Variables, Macrosystem Ecology and cross-scale interactions allow for a deeper understanding of the Earths Critical Zone. Open and interoperable access to data and knowledge is assured by a GEO Ecosystem Virtual Laboratory Platform, fully integrated in GEOSS. Support to transparent and knowledge-based conservation and management policies, able to include information from EO data, is developed. Knowledge gained in the PAs is upscaled to pan-European conditions and used for planning and management of future PAs. A permanent stakeholder consultancy group (GEO Ecosystem Community of Practice) will be created. Capacity building is pursued at all levels. SMEs are involved to create expertise leading to new job opportunities, ensuring long-term continuation of services. In summary, ECOPOTENTIAL uses the most advanced technologies to improve future ecosystem benefits for humankind.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-CA | Phase: SPA.2010.1.1-07 | Award Amount: 1.27M | Year: 2011

The overall objective of GRAAL is to foster the development of GMES Downstream Services and develop the link of GMES with Regions (and other local authorities of comparable importance). The essence of GRAAL lies in the balance between these two sub-objectives. The members of the GRAAL consortium believe that there is as much a need to develop the awareness of GMES in LRAs as it is necessary to ensure that there are Service Providers in a position to serve this market and to accomplish the Lisbon strategy-related objectives of GMES. It is proposed to achieve this overall ambition through the following objectives: To characterise the offer in terms of GMES services for LRAs; To establish an observatory of the GMES Downstream Service sector; To develop a user oriented tool implemented on a Website where demand and offer will meet and where exchanges can take place by using the most advanced web-based technologies; To increase awareness of GMES among LRAs and potential Service Providers; All the activities shall be conducted in coordination with the DORIS_Net project. To maximise the overall efficiency of the work performed by the two projects, this coordination will be based on a clear distribution of tasks and targets.

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