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The Centre for Earth Observation Instrumentation and Space Technology (CEOI-ST) brings together a partnership of UK scientists and engineers from academia and industry to develop the UK capability in Earth Observation (EO) technologies and instrumentation. It meets the key UK Space Agency objectives for the Centre and creates an environment for the submission of advanced future EO mission and instrument proposals to ESA.

The Centre is set up as a partnership led by Airbus DS together with QinetiQ, University of Leicester and STFC/Rutherford Appleton Laboratory.

The Centre is led by Director, Mick Johnson of Airbus DS Ltd, supported by a Leadership Team, with members from each of the partner organisations. This team have the breadth of skills and experience necessary to deliver the “Science Driven, Project Based” vision of the Centre.

The Centre is distributed in nature, using the strengths of the partners to provide key staff, thus permitting cost effective access to senior and experienced personnel. This combined expertise, available across all the relevant areas of science and technology, ensures successful delivery of the Centre’s strategy.

Key drivers for the Centre are: scientific need; relevance to UK and international science priorities; technological innovation; development of advanced instrumentation; benefit to the user community; reduction of mission risk and cost. The Centre isdelivering measurable results through well-targeted technology projects.

The Centre does not work in isolation - leading scientists from the NERC, the NCEO and the broader user community are actively engaged by the Centre on the development of the science drivers and critical instrument technologies, most natoably through a series of Challenge Workshops. Scientists are also engaged in science teams relevant to each instrumentation project to ensure that technology development is aligned with scientific need.  This has the added benefit of developing the science team members’ skills - as leaders and advocates - so that they may themselves lead future international mission proposals and programmes.

The first instrument development programmes were initiated by the Partners as soon as the Centre was established, addressing the key atmospheric problems of climate interactions and air quality, science priorities that are well matched to existing UK academic and industrial capability. Subsequent Open Calls to the wider UK EO community have resulted in the funding of projects which address a very broad range of technlogy needs for future environmental monitoring.The projects chosen reflect the UK priorities, investing in clearly identified gaps in short- and mid-term instrumentation requirements that have opportunities in ESA EOEP, GMES Sentinel and post-EPS programmes, where UK developed technology will have the largest impact.