ESA Validation Data Centre

This project is funded by the European Space Agency and is an international collaboration with NILU , SkyTEK, RHEA System S.p.A and BC Scientific Consulting  LLC.

The ESA Validation Data Centre (EVDC) is an online resource used for the archiving and exchange of correlative data for validation of atmospheric products produced by satellite platforms. It plays a key part in science of Earth Observation and it is used by an international community of scientists.

As Europe's fleet of satellites grow the data storage requirement also increases. The latest European satellites (the Sentinel series) are at the cutting edge of  Earth Observation technology. For example the data flow from the Sentinel-1 satellite is very large and the scale of this data poses data management challenges. The image below is from the Sentinel-1 satellite, it was produced after considerable processing of the raw output data.

River Shannon in flood, dark areas are water
Sentinel-1 image of river Shannon in flood. Dark areas are water.

A dividend from the emergence of the Cloud computing industry is the availability of mature and innovative information technology focused at solving various aspects of the Big Data problem. In order to meet the data management challenges posed by the new suite of Sentinel satellites the EVDC online resource was rebuilt to take advantage of developments in Cloud based architecture and new Internet technologies. One aspect of the modernization was to transform the EVDC system into one based on loosely coupled components that communicate via Restful services. The great advantage of this approach is that components of the system can be maintained independently.

ICHEC's contribution to the new EVDC system is a 1.5 PetaByte object data store accessible via Restful web services. 

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