New dates for the I Copernicus National Conference
The first National Conference on the Copernicus program, previously scheduled for December 2021, was postponed for March 2022.
Due to the pandemic evolution and the rise of covid-19 positive cases both in Portugal and Europe, the Portuguese Space Agency, Portugal Space, has decided to postpone the I Copernicus National Conference, which was scheduled for the 13th – 14th of December, at the University of Évora. The event has already a new date and will happen on the 22nd and the 23rd of March 2022.
Carolina Sá, Earth Observation Officer at the Portugal Space Agency, regrets that the conference has been postponed, but highlights the “excellent participation” that the event reunited by the national community: “Unfortunately, the I Copernicus National Conference was postponed, but the number of applications we received for oral communications and posters presentations can be an indicator that, in March, we will have a landmark event. The aim is for this to truly be the meeting point for the national community of Copernicus users.”
Since last September, when the call for applications submissions opened, the Portuguese Space Agency received more than 150 registrations and 50 abstracts on various themes regarding Copernicus.
A “huge potential”
Even though the event was postponed, the objective remains the same: “To bring together not only the members of the Copernicus Program ambassador network, but also those who already use the images captured by the Sentinel satellites and, of course, those who intend to do it”, emphasizes Carolina Sá.
“It is an essential exchange of knowledge for the growth of the user base of a system that is so fundamental to various areas of human activity, such as economy, research, education, culture, among many others. And it has enormous potential in Portugal.” In September, when the call for applications was launched, the Earth Observation officer highlighted that the event also aims to “make national suppliers aware of the opportunities that arise in terms of service provision for Copernicus, so that Portugal can significantly increase its presence in the program.”
The application domains for Earth Observation data are extensive. They range from agriculture to fisheries, from tools for improving mobility and monitoring air quality to detecting soil movements in infrastructures. The conference will include communications in these areas, with a session entirely dedicated to agriculture. The draft agenda can already be consulted here. Registration to attend the conference will stay open until the end of January 2022, but the venue has limited capacity.
The Copernicus National Conference takes place within the FPCUP* program and follows the completion of three workshops focused on the potential of the European Union Program for the creation of applications and services in the Marine and Land Monitoring components, also expanding its view toward opportunities that exist for funding and developing a business model based on satellite data.
[*This event is supported by the European Union’s Caroline Herschel Framework Partnership Agreement on Copernicus User Uptake under grant agreement No FPA 275/G/GRO/COPE/17/10042, project FPCUP (Framework Partnership Agreement on Copernicus User Uptake), Action No 18, Action title “Portuguese users coordination and training – Part II (Portugal Space, Direção-Geral do Território and Air Centre)”, SGA grant no 10.]