Copernicus is a European Union programme which provides operational information on the world’s land surfaces, oceans and atmosphere, to support environmental and security policymaking and meet the needs of citizens and service providers. Under the Space Component of the Copernicus programme,
ESA has developed a family of dedicated satellites, called the Copernicus Sentinels, to serve the programme’s Earth Observation requirements. The data acquired from these missions is systematically downlinked and processed to operational user-level data by the Sentinel ground segments. The Copernicus Data Access System retrieves the Copernicus Sentinel-1, -2, -3 (land) and -5P user-level data from the relevant ground segment and makes them available for users to download from dedicated access points, known as data hubs.
The magnitude of the task which the Data Access System manages is visible throughout the Report, from the description of the extensions made to the underlying infrastructure, to the statistics about data publication and download. In 2022, the 68 millionth data package was published on the Open Hub and on average almost 40,000 data packages were published per day. Moreover, the number of registered users on the Open Hub increased again, from 496,382 users at the end of Y2021 to 638,259 by the end of 2022, and there were 108 countries across the world with more than 500 registered users, a rise from 96 at the end of Y2021.
Despite the growing shift towards local processing on cloud-based data collections, such as those on the five DIAS, as many as 161,656,822 data packages were downloaded in 2022 alone, and 99,046 individual users from across the globe made at least one complete download during the year.
These figures suggest that there is still considerable demand for download services as well as hosted processing services, and not only that the existing user base consolidated but also that word is continuing to spread, and more and more users around the world are starting to engage with the potential contained in the vast stores of free and open data available through the Copernicus Data Access System.