Space Applications Powered by Big Data and Cloud Computing

Can you imagine how much big data from space is available each day? Actually, we are talking of several petabytes of valuable information around the globe! With unprecedented information and knowledge embedded, you can process these big data for non-space applications adding value to engineering development and business decisions.

In addition, cloud computing has emerged as a new paradigm to provide computing as a utility service. The main benefits cloud computing provides are the systematic evaluation of big data, understanding the collected information and how it relates to each other as well as the near real-time analysis of the collected data. But how bringing these together and how storing and making use of this gigantic amount of data?

Countless applications on Earth tackle this challenge with cloud-based services relying on this space-borne data for commercial and societal purposes. Fortunately cloud services are affordable now. This circumstance brings you to the big data sector. With your smart services and smart products based on big data and cloud technology, you as a pioneering entrepreneur will revolutionise various industries with novel business ideas. These kind of business ideas are exactly what the Copernicus Masters CGI Challenge, T-Systems Challenge, the EC Copernicus Big Data Challenge as well as the EC Copernicus B2B Challenge are looking for.

Show the world how your idea pushes business and benefits society with big data from space! SIGN UP NOW for the Copernicus Masters Challenges – or before 30 June 2017.

Powerful Partners Awarding Precious Prizes

Make use of Earth observation (EO) data and boost your big data business idea! Collaborate with well-known Copernicus Masters partners such as the European Commission (EC), CGI Group Inc. and T-Systems International GmbH! The most innovative participants are awarded with extraordinary prizes. The best applicants powered by these first-class partners will be also granted access to the prestigious Copernicus Accelerator programme (read more below). Moreover, the winners have the chance to receive a ticket to the next satellite launch in Kourou. In addition, cash prizes, support packages and substantial satellite data quota are awarded.


The EC is looking for Your Support

With its Copernicus Big Data Challenge, the EC wants to support applications that facilitate the use of Copernicus data and services and/or make it available to non-experts. If you participate in this Challenge, you should propose applications designed to improve access to Copernicus data and services, as well as their processing, visualisation, and combination with other sources of data (EO and non-EO). Possible examples include:


  • Software to facilitate the integration of Copernicus-based maps into other applications
  • A mobile app that allows simple visualisation of Copernicus data and services
  • Software to facilitate the combination of Copernicus data with other sources of data
  • Protocols to ease the use and processing of Copernicus data and services
  • Software to enable analytics for Copernicus data and services

At the same time, the EC’s Copernicus B2B Challenge aims at demonstrating that Copernicus presents significant commercial potential. Participants in this Challenge are called to propose applications that use Copernicus and provide a service to businesses in commercial sectors. The following show possible business ideas:

  • An application to help insurance and reinsurance companies predict or evaluate losses
  • A service to improve extraction of raw materials (mining, oil and gas…)
  • Applications for farmers, forest-owners, and fishermen
  • Applications to improve the production of renewable energies (solar, biomass…)
  • Services to help construction companies monitor infrastructure
  • Transportation services

CGI is Looking for Your Compelling Idea

Additionally, CGI with its Big Data Big Business Challenge, is looking for new solutions with global potential – based on Copernicus data. Here you need to address an identified business problem in the commercial sector with a clear business case, which could be based on cost efficiency or disruptive change to the way an organisation does business. CGI is looking for your compelling ideas that leverage the large volumes of Copernicus data to provide new operational services to businesses. Your concepts should be able to be prototyped rapidly, or already exist in prototype form, so that they can be demonstrated quickly. Solutions could support sectors such as energy, utilities, financial services, insurance, agriculture and transport.


Be Part of the T-Systems Sessions

Yet another great challenge is the T-Systems Open Telekom Cloud Challenge. It awards prizes to your best Copernicus application or service idea, established during a four-week sandbox exercise on the public Open Telekom Cloud service. The exercise will be held on a public cloud designed to derive on-demand intelligence from Earth observation data. Entrants will be selected and invited to a training and interaction session at the start of the exercise. The cloud provides satellite data, analytics tools, standard interfaces, and workflow management to assist you – as a participant –  in creating new services. T-Systems is looking for solutions that offer benefits to European citizens and their public administrations, which face challenges in meeting increased demand for mobility, urban logistics, tourism, and more while simultaneously reducing negative environmental impacts are of particular interest. Your submissions using Sentinel Satellite data in combination with other data sources on the public cloud platform are highly welcome.

Use Lucrative Sentinel Data As you know, the recent development of big data and cloud services have changed workflows and professional environments of the industry. However, this development is also a major benefit for you as a startup but also for inventors: Due to the fact that technologies capable of handling huge amounts of information are not only open to institutes and large corporations exclusively anymore. Such as sentinel satellite data. It serves as an incredible goldmine for you, all founders and innovators who use the intelligence of Earth observation data. It refers to all kinds of information collected by Earth observation satellites. This information ranges from high resolution imagery to radar monitoring and sea-surface topography. So early this year, scientists observed the bleaching of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef using satellite images: Sentinel-2’s frequent revisits and its resolution made it possible. Promoting such an adoption of innovative approaches could foster growth and boost competitiveness of the European aerospace industry. At the Copernicus Masters, the ESA Sentinel Small Sat (S^3) Challenge goal is to stimulate ground-breaking satellite design, testing and manufacturing solutions leading to small missions either complementary or providing added value to the current Sentinel family missions.

Copernicus Masters Winner 2016

To give you an idea: The team around Grega Milcinski from Slovenia’s Sinergise Ltd. won the 2016 Copernicus Masters competition with Sentinel Hub – a pathbreaking cloud-based web service for satellite data. Sinergise just recently announced that its free satellite imagery visualisation tool called EO Browser is online and ready to use. It offers the possibility to easily search and study vast amounts of archive and fresh satellite imagery residing in the cloud. Put into figures, the newly released EO Browser has the huge number of 1.1 million processed requests by nearly 12,000 users.

So, you as a startup or innovator, you are called to take this opportunity and write your own chapter of the Copernicus Masters success story with your future-oriented business idea.

Copernicus Masters and the Copernicus Accelerator

AZO has launched the Copernicus Masters in 2011. On behalf of the European Space Agency (ESA) and with strong support of world-class partners as part of their mission, the goal was to foster the User Uptake of Copernicus services. Ever since, the Copernicus Masters is an international competition which awards prizes to innovative solutions for business and society based on EO data. The Copernicus Masters has developed into the moving force of promoting cutting-edge solutions. In 2016, the European Commission has launched the Copernicus Accelerator. This one-of-a-kind programme is focused on providing a tailored business coaching service for up to 50 finalists in the competition.

Take your chance now! Submit your idea immediately. The submission phase for the Copernicus Masters 2017 runs until 30 June 2017.

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