What is a TEP?
Thematic Exploitation Platforms (TEPs) are ESA’s answer to the technical challenges related to the ever increasing volume of EO data. The TEP concept aims to provide a working virtual environment which shall provide users with access to data, algorthims and computing resources and tools, thus avoiding the need to download and store large volumes of data.
Exploitation Platforms are virtual workspaces which provide a user community with access to:
- Large volumes of both EO and non-space data
- Processing software and services
- Algorithm development and integration environment
- Computing resources and hosted processing (e.g. cloud computing)
- Collaboration/networking opportunities
In essence, an Exploitation Platform provides a fully equipped work environment which allows it’s users to efficiently access and process large amounts of data. By bringing the processing software to the data, Exploitation Platforms mitigate common problems such as moving large volumes of data, developing tools for sourcing data and data storage. and will enable rapid data access, rapid development and testing of algorithms and promote product and service development. In addition, by promoting a collaborative environment, users may share algorithm development methods and publish results within the user community.
“Bringing users to the data”
A range of TEPs are being developed, each tailored to a specific user community and research field (e.g. Hydrology TEP, Polar TEP, Coastal TEP). These innovative virtual platforms aim to simplify the extraction of information, from Earth Observation (EO) data, for the advancement of data-intensive research within specific areas of environmental research. This new form of providing data access and processing capabilities will encourage the wider exploitation of EO data.
For the latest updates and achievements please see ESA’s TEP website.