FOSS4G EO Data Challenge

Grant Application Deadline: 
Monday, August 26, 2019

General information

For more than 40 years, “Earth Observation” (EO) satellites developed or operated by space agencies, and by the European Union since the launch of the Copernicus programme, have provided a wealth of data. The availability of a growing volume of environmental data from space represents a unique opportunity for science and applications, but also poses a major challenge to achieve its full potential in terms of data exploitation. The availability of large volumes of EO data raises new issues in terms of discovery, access, exploitation, and visualization. Different communities, having different needs, methods, languages and protocols, need tools to facilitate access to the large volume and heterogeneity of environmental data, to cooperate to give the EO data and derived information the significance they need.

Responding to these technological and community challenges requires the development of new ways of working, capitalizing on software and hardware developments to facilitate the mining, exploitation, analysis, sharing and visualization of massive EO data sets and high-level products and we are convinced that the FOSS4G community can play a crucial role in addressing these challenges.

With the FOSS4G EO Data Challenge, we are challenging startups, developers, students and researchers to come up with useful, valuable or interesting open source applications using large volumes of EO data (and their evolution in time) and state-of-the art technologies (AI/ML, HMC, STAC, data cube, COG). Linking of EO data with other sources of open data (e.g. OpenStreetMap, Copernicus Services – Land, Atmosphere, Climate) is highly encouraged. Our voluntary mentors will guide the process to mature and demonstrate your ideas.

If you want to join the challenge as a mentor, as a sponsor or IaaS provider, please send us a message at foss4g2019 [at]

All participants will have our gratitude and applause, yet only the best solutions will be rewarded. All prizes will be announced by the FOSS4G 2019 EO Data Challenge Committee in a ceremony on the 28th of August and will consist of four prizes of 2500 Euro each, based on criteria agreed by the jury after analyzing all the proposals reaching the final phase of the competition.


The competition will be open for approximately 6 months, from March until the FOSS4G conference date (26 of August), and will have several phases:

  • Call for challenges and solutions will be open for two weeks and, at the end of the call, the best solutions, selected by a group of open source / EO data gurus will go into the second phase.
  • The quality and feasibility of each selected solution will be evaluated and selected for mentoring by our veteran company partners.
  • The best of the best will go to the final phase where the teams will receive accounts on a (geo)cloud with access to multi-petabyte of data and high computing resources.
  • The mentored development results will be presented during the conference and the winners will be selected by a jury with representatives from industry, open source communities, space agencies and the European Commission.

Important Dates

  • 3 April: Launch of the call for proposals;
  • 10 April: Close of the call and start of the selection process;
  • 20 April: Start of in-lab development and mentoring;
  • 1 July: Setup in cloud environment;
  • 28 August: Winners announced in FOSS4G 2019 Ceremony.

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