November 2020

It is a great pleasure for me to introduce this fourth newsletter of e-shape. So many things have happened since our last release, and I firmly believe that you will find this new edition of our e-shape newsletter very interesting.

The first two services issued from the project are now online. It is only the top of the iceberg of the activities carried one in e-shape, but they are the visible part. More services will come in the next months.

To favor the sustainability and the uptake of all the e-shape services, the sustainability booster is officially developed and available. You will discover, by exploring its content, a set of information, tools and support towards the sustainability.

In order to confirm our findings and methods and to open them to the EuroGEO community and the Earth Observation domain at large, we developed an on-boarding process. This process was applied by 34 teams and allowed us to welcome 8 new partners and 5 new pilots within e-shape. Next year this process will again allow us to welcome 5 more pilots.

Our first Virtual General Assembly (GA) took place from October 19 to 21, 2020. More than a usual GA, this event was the occasion to virtually bring together not only the partners of the project but also a part of the EuroGEO Community and to share our progresses with all. This challenging event allowed us to gather feedback and material of high value for the community. It will help the broader EuroGEO and GEO community to know more about e-shape, to understand our contribution, to benefit from our findings and to built collaborations.

As you will read in this newsletter, even during COVID-19 crisis, the e-shape partners were committed, at work and highly productive. Do not hesitate to contact us through our helpdesk and enjoy this newsletter.

Thierry Ranchin
Scientific Coordinator of e-shape, ARMINES

Discover e-shape!
e-shape is a unique project that brings together decades of public investment in Earth Observation and in cloud capabilities into services for the decision-makers, the citizens, the industry and the researchers.
e-shape aspires to provide significant impetus to activities that will enable and accelerate a breakthrough in the European EO sector and the downstream markets that benefit from EO services. 
e-shape allows Europe to position itself as global force in EO through leveraging Copernicus, making use of existing European capacities and improving user uptake of the data from GEO assets.
Our news

e-shape selects the 5 new pilots of the Call for EO-based products 2020

e-shape has welcomed during the annual General Assembly from 19-21 October 2020, the 5 new pilots of the Call for EO-based products 2020 that will join the e-shape consortium expanding the EuroGEO community.

To bring new needs, the latest advances in the EO domain and ideas into the project and ensuring e-shape’s methodology can be deployed operationally across domains and applications, the e-shape General Assembly concluded a successful Onboarding process. 34 applications from private entities, research institutes, and academia from all Europe and beyond, showcasing added-value and on-the-edge services to foster the awareness of EU Earth Observation capabilities were received.

“The amount of applications received shows the great interest to develop and raise awareness on the European EO capabilities, by delivering EO-based benefits to users and supporting the EuroGEO vision. This testifies the strong willingness of all these entities to cooperate and showcase the strengths and the tremendous contributions of Europe for and with users”, said Emmanuel Pajot, EARSC Secretary General.


Our new pilots in a nutshell!

The new onboarded pilots will be integrated in the e-shape consortium and benefit from e-shape project support including co-design methodologies, deployment support, users’ uptake, capacity building & liaison, sustainability & upscaling, communication, dissemination & Help Desk.

The 5 new pilots are and are led by:
1. Riscognition GmBH: Linking EO and Farm IoT for Automated Decision Support (Showcase Agriculture) Read more...
2. NASU-SSAU: SDGs indicators assessment service (2.4.1 and 15.3.1) (Showcase Agriculture) Read more...
3. Water Insight B.V: EO based phytoplankton biomass for WFD reporting (Showcase Water) Read more...
4. Planetek: Rheticus® AquaculturePlus (Showcase Water)
5. DHI GRAS A/S: WindSight - First class input data for wind energy models (Showcase Energy) Read more...

e-shape statement: GEO WEEK 2020 
2-6 November 2020

"e-shape is an unique initiative under the EU-funded Horizon 2020 programme that seeks to accelerate a breakthrough in the European Observation sector and serving GEO through further shaping the EuroGEO initiative. e-shape develops and promotes European EO capabilities with and for the users through a co-design approach with as a key element to bring new partners on-board.

The pilots under e-shape are useful real-world applications and this year, e-shape is on-boarding five new pilots with the aim to bring new contributors and users in GEO.”

Thierry Ranchin
Scientific Coordinator of e-shape, ARMINES

Read more....

Deep dives with e-shape at Scientific Impact Magazine!

Our e-shape article "Shaping our understanding of planet Earth" has been published!

What role do researchers, SMEs and companies involved in Earth Observation (EO)-based services play in the e-shape initiative?

How important are your collaborators to the delivery of this initiative?

What role do the Pilots play in the project?

What will you be focusing on in the coming months and years?

Professor Thierry Ranchin, Dr Nicolas Fichaux, Lionel Menard and Mathieu Reboul give the answers!

Read the full story here.

e-shape: bridging Earth Οbservation communities to change lives

The Innovation News Network Magazine #Issue 3 features the work of our partner "National Observatory of Athens" and their role in the H2020 project, e-shape.

Research Directors Evangelos Gerasopoulos and Charalampos (Haris) Kontoes discuss how the institution plan to coordinate earth observation in order to improve upon global sustainability and deliver robust environmental information.

Find out the role of the National Observatory of Athens in e-shape here!

e-shape | one of the nine EU-funded Environmental Observations projects

e-shape is one of the nine EU-funded Environmental Observations projects that contribute to upscale Europe’s Environmental Observations capacities and develop solutions meeting specific users’ needs.

The specific CORDIS Results Pack showcases the results of several Horizon 2020-funded projects, which have been building on these assets to develop commercial applications, create benefits for our citizens and support better policymaking.

This Pack provides a short introduction to the 4-year e-shape project that began in May 2019, will continue until April 2023 and is a truly crucial project for establishing EuroGEO and creating benefits from it. e-shape currently brings together 55 partners with the goal of delivering a comprehensive suite of EO services through the implementation of 27 pilots spanning seven thematic areas aligned with the SDGs. Furthermore, the project fosters entrepreneurship and supports the sustainable development of scalable services.

Find more about e-shape here!

The CORDIS Results Pack is available here.

e-shape at EuroGEO Disaster Resilience Action Group

The Committee on Earth Observation Satellites (CEOS), in the framework of the Work Activity of its Disasters Working Group, invited Dr Haris Kontoes to present the activities of the EuroGEO Disaster Resilience Action Group, in his capacity as Coordinator of this Action Group.

Therefore, on 7 July 2020 Dr Haris Kontoes and Alexia Tsouni gave a presentation during the WG Disasters Telecon #27.

They introduced the 7 expressions of intent under the EuroGEO Disaster Resilience Action Group, including the following e-shape pilots:

  • Pilot 6.1 | EO4D_ASH - EO Data for Detection, Discrimination & Distribution (4D) of Volcanic ash
  • Pilot 6.2 | GEOSS for Disasters in Urban Environment
  • Pilot 6.3 | Assessing Geo-hazard vulnerability of Cities & Critical Infrastructures
  • Pilot 6.4 | ReSAgri - Resilient & Sustainable ecosystems including Agriculture & food
  • Pilot 5.2 | Satellite Earth Observation-derived water bodies & floodwater record over Europe
Our services

The nextSENSE web service

The nextSENSE service was implemented in the framework of the EuroGEO e-shape’s renewable energy showcase (nextSENSE pilot) and provides continuous monitoring and short-term forecasting of solar energy in real-time for Europe and North Africa. It is based on Earth Observation data (EUMETSAT’s SAF NWC, Copernicus CAMS), fast radiative transfer models (AMT, 2018), motion flow modeling techniques and high performance computing, enabling almost 50 million simulations in less than 5 minute and an overall dataflow of more than 550 Gb/day.

The user through the nextSENSE’s fully dynamical interface will be able to navigate, zoom and click at any pixel of the 1.5 million matrix retrieving solar energy potential information for 3 hours ahead and 3 hours back time horizons at 15-min intervals.

Harvester Seasons - Climate Service

Harvesting machines weigh about 20 tons and require good bearing capacity of the terrain to avoid the machines from getting stuck. Only sufficient soil conditions prevent damaging the topsoil of the forest floor and negatively impacting the biosphere. Up to 80% Finish forest land have been classified by Finnish Forest center (Metsäkeskus) based on airborne laser scanning data. Such information can be used in assessing sufficient conditions for forest trafficability. Six classes are available, where some require dry summer and some winter conditions for harvesting to occur.

The new Harvester Seasons -service by Finish Meteorological Institute (FMI) extends this classification by helping to estimate for up to several months ahead if and when good trafficability conditions occur. While for summer dry conditions are best suitable, in winter adequate frost and snow conditions are required.

Our publications
Corradini S., Guerrieri L, Stelitano D., Salerno G., Scollo S., Merucci L, Prestifilippo M., Musacchio M., Silvestri M., Lombardo V. and Caltabiano T.Near Real-Time Monitoring of the Christmas 2018Etna Eruption Using SEVIRI and Products Validation.Remote Sensing, 2020, 12, 1336.

De Simone, F., D’Amore, F.; Marasco, F., Carbone, F., Bencardino, M., Hedgecock, I.M., Cinnirella, S., Sprovieri, F., Pirrone N. A Chemical Transport Model Emulator for the Interactive Evaluation of Mercury Emission Reduction Scenarios.Atmosphere 2020, 11, 878.
Check out all publications
Insight products

Wildfires going extreme – Earth Observation to the rescue!

Although fires are a common component of healthy ecosystems, extreme wildfires, on the other hand, pose a serious threat to critical infrastructure and human lives. Among their many consequences, wildfires lead to environmental degradation and air quality deterioration, loss of property, crops, and other vital resources. The losses incurred during the 2019-2020 wildfires prove that there is still a lot to be done to protect ecosystems and, ultimately, ourselves against this increasing threat. In their efforts to identify the best early detection and management tools, decision-makers and practitioners have turned to geoinformatics. Imaging the Earth with daily regularity, Satellite Earth Observation (EO) shows great potential for addressing current needs and trends as we shall try to demonstrate further.

Read the article here.

The opportunity and challenge of building a planetary digital twin

Prototyping and modelling are very much the norm among innovators and advanced manufacturers, as they offer extensive testing and refinement opportunities, vital when fiddling with novel, high impact technologies. But what if modelling could help humanity better understand Earth’s complex ecosystem and the different components at play? Introducing “Digital Earth”: concept, next steps, and opportunities.

Read the article here.

e-shape IP and Innovation Office (IIPO)

The e-shape IP and Innovation Office provides first-hand advice and on-demand support on intellectual property (IP) and innovation. The services are aimed at assisting the e-shape pilots with their commercialisation efforts, as well as supporting the broader EO ecosystem, composed of EO companies in different stage of their development, research institutes, researchers and entrepreneurs, and investors or investees. The IIPO will provide regular materials on relevant topics and initial FAQs on how to get started with commercialisation, innovation and IP. Furthermore, a tailored on-demand support will be offered and shall result in case-specific advices from our team, which combines expertise in EO, innovation, and IP. Visit the IP and Innovation Office here.
Check out all the insights products and services
Telling our story

A story about agriculture, food security, e-shape, EuroGEO, GEO by Sven Gilliams/VITO

Just past the first anniversary of the e-shape project, you should by now all know our slogan; We e-shape EuroGEO!! But what does it mean? What is e-shape? What is EuroGEO and what does it mean for the agricultural services in Europe?

As lead of the Food Security and Sustainble Agriculture showcase of e-shape I'm happy to give you a short recap of what has happened in our first year and explain more about the agricultural services we are developing to monitor and improve sustainable agriculture in Europe.

Read the full text

e-shape synergies! our contribution to eLTER

How does e-shape project contributes to eLTER? an article by Ulf Mallast

The integrated European Long-Term Ecosystem, critical zone and socio-ecological Research Infrastructure (eLTER RI) is now in the preparatory phase of formal implementation as a pan-European Research Infrastructure. To secure the implementation of the eLTER RI, the European Commission has recently approved two major, complementary Horizon2020 projects: eLTER PLUS (Advanced Community) and eLTER PPP (Preparatory Phase). The projects will provide a major boost to scientific work at selected eLTER sites across Europe (eLTER PLUS) and thereby catalyze eLTER RI development (eLTER PPP). Both projects will start in February 2020 and will last five years.

Within e-shape seven showcases aim to address societal challenges, foster entrepreneurship and support sustainable development, in alignment to the three main priorities of GEO (SDGs, the Paris Agreement and the Sendaï Framework). 

Read more

Co-design process

Athens co-design workshop takes place virtually 1st of July!

Co-design is used as a toolbox to support the development of the 27 e-shape services in a user-centric approach. Developing services from Earth Observation data brings about specific challenges - a high level of technical expertise, and a large heterogeneity of actors to be involved. Thus, based on recent advances of design theory, a co-design method specific to the EO context is being developed within e-shape by the Center for Management Sciences at MINES Paristech - PSL University (France). This co-design approach involves two phases: (1) identification of the issues hindering the development process and the actors to be involved, (2) implementation of "resilient-fit" co-design actions targeting the long-term growth of the ecosystem and its ability to adapt to future evolutions. 

Such a "resilient-fit" co-design action was carried out with Pilot 3 within Health Surveillance showcase, the “Health Surveillance Air Quality" Pilot (HSAQ), led by the National Observatory of Athens (NOA). The HSAQ Pilot aims to create a modular platform for surveillance of air quality and related health issues both globally and in certain urban areas, Athens being one. The Athens component of this service will aim to combine a combination of several data layers: city-scale air quality modeling data, along with local health, land use and socioeconomic data layers.

The co-design workshop aimed at exploring a range of potential lists of requirements of the different users related to the Athens aspect of the Pilot’s service, and establishing future partnerships between NOA and each user to further learn and develop the service with them.

Evangelos Gerasopoulos (Pilot leader):

"Working closely with the WP2 team and our users, the initial co-design workshop proved to be an immense success with over 18 participants representing a wide variety of users for the Athens case, such as the Greek National Public Health Organization, both the Region and Municipality of Athens, a Sustainable City Network and the PANACEA Research Infrastructure. Beyond providing a forum for this initial discussion of the list of requirements from these users and an introduction to the HSAQ Pilot and co-design process, the workshop served as a means to formalize relationships and find synergies between workflows and users, propelling us to officially pursue partnering with National Public Health Organization and the Ministry of Energy and the Environment to discuss and share data, and contribute to the development of a national health observatory. The experience of the co-design workshop also better positioned us, as Pilot lead, to help other Pilot partners in engaging with their local users in a meaningful way to foster co-design of their respective city-specific components of our Pilot's overall global service."

The agenda of the workshop is available here

The main presentation is available here: Athens_Codesign_Workshop_Support presentation_newsletter.pdf

We are out there!
Space for cities, online workshop 27/10/2020. Read more..

EARSC - Space Climate Observatory | webinar 14 Oct, 2020. Read more..

Online Smart Farming Conference | October 9, 2020. Read more..

Copernicus Relay and Academy monthly teleconference. Read more..

GEOBON Open Science Conference and All Hands Meeting. Read more..

ESA Phi-week 2020.  Read more..

EARSC virtual EOcafe: Growing your Next EO Business.
Read more..

Space Applications for Sustainable Development Goal 13: Climate Action. Read more..

First snapshot of the European Infrastructures and platforms for EuroGEO.  Read more..
Check out all news and events
e-shape community

Virtual General Assembly

On October 19th-21st, more than 200 participants attended the virtual General Assembly of e-shape. For this edition, emphasis was put on the past achievements for the last 18 months, and opening the dialogue with strategic partners within e-shape's ecosystem: the European Platforms and DIASes forming the basis for a future network of Associate Partners; the newly onboarded e-shape Pilots; the newly funded H2020 projects; the e-shape Advisory Board; and key institutions - the European Commission, EuroGEO, Copernicus, GEO, ESA... 

Read more..

Survey about Ground Control Point Service

Our partner, Planetek Italia, together with its partner GAP, is developing a service for the delivery of Ground Control Points for the orthorectification of EO data. To take any different user need Planetek is asking to the international EO community to share their desiderata in using such kind of service. 

Here you can find a survey where you can express your preferences.

Please share your expectations.

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Copyright © 2020 e-shape, All rights reserved.

The e-shape project has received funding from the European Union's

Horizon 2020 (
H2020) research & innovation  programme under

grant agreement No 820852.

Project Duration: 01/05/2019 - 30/04/2023 (48 Months)

Project Homepage: www.

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