e-GEOS (80%-owned by Telespazio and 20%-owned by the Italian Space Agency) has won two tenders launched by the European Commission worth a total of EUR 9.6 million, as part of the GMES (Global Monitoring for Environment and Security) programme. The Italian company, which operates in the Earth observation services sector, will provide geospatial information and satellite maps of areas affected by emergencies to the European Commission, which will then be able to make the data necessary to manage disasters available to the civil protection services and competent authorities of EU countries. Furthermore, the Commission will be able to make pre- and post-event maps of any area in the world available within a few hours of the emergency arising, thereby facilitating the organisation of aid operations.
The 24-hour-a-day service can be used in all crisis situations (floods, earthquakes, fires, technological disasters, etc), and will be managed by e-GEOS, which will lead a consortium consisting of German subsidiary GAF, Italian company Ithaca and French group SIRS. The two contracts concern “rush” and “non-rush” production, and are managed by the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC). All satellites that operate as part of GMES will be used to monitor the Earth: COSMO-SkyMed, Radarsat, Geoeye, Digital Globe, Spot, and in the future, ESA’s Sentinel satellites. In rush mode, users will be able to activate the on-demand service during the crisis, and will receive prevent maps six hours after activation, and maps identifying the affected area and assessing the damage 12 hours after the first satellite data is received. The non-rush service will produce themed maps that analyse risk and support reconstruction, both in Europe and worldwide. These maps will be provided according to a plan established by the European Commission, based on the requests of member states and authorised bodies.
The two contracts represent a big success for the Italian group, whose technical and operational offer was selected at the end of a long international tender process. e-GEOS can count on Telespazio’s decades of experience in geospatial services. Specifically, in emergency management, e-GEOS has worked successfully in support of organisations such as the UN, the International Red Cross and European civil protection authorities. In the last few years, the company has supported rescue operations following the earthquakes in Abruzzo and Haiti, as well as those after the floods in northern Italy, Australia and China. e-GEOS, which is based in Rome and Matera, is today supported by cutting-edge IT infrastructure able to manage large quantities of data and maps, developed in the geographic information systems sector.
e-GEOS, an Italian Space Agency (20%) and Telespazio (80%) company, is a leading international player in the geo-spatial business. e-GEOS offers a whole range of products and services in the Earth Observation and in the geo-spatial application domains, based on both optical and radar satellites as well as on aerial surveys. e-GEOS operates its Earth Observation centres in Matera and Neustrelitz, where data from multiple satellites are received and processed, also for near-real-time monitoring. As the European hub for very high resolution data, e-GEOS grants a unique access to COSMO-SkyMed, GeoEye-1, IKONOS, QuickBird, WorlView-1&2 and Radarsat-1&2 satellites.