The open and free data provided by the Swiss Data Cube is dependent on what is called Analysis Ready Data (ARD). This is Earth observation data that has been processed according to a set of requirements that allow immediate analysis.
Preparing data for analysis is a major hurdle to the uptake of satellite images. Traditionally 80% of project time could be taken up in accessing, pre-processing and organising satellite images. Analysis ready data is a game-changer and is critical if Earth observation infrastructures are going to be efficient, and sustainable.
Currently, the Swiss Data Cube uses open and free ARD provided by international satellite EOprograms, including:
We use these datasets to create our tools and services, but we also make the datasets themselves available through the SDC platform. These datasets are processed regularly to ensure all the services, tools and platform data remains current and has consistent continental coverage. By providing the data in a more accessible format, a larger range of non-specialist users will be able to use its valuable information and insights. From simply identifying water resources for greater access to clean water through to the ability to regularly map food crops.
The Committee on Earth Observing Satellites (CEOS) ensures international coordination of Earth observation programs and promotes exchange and optimisation of data for decision making. CEOS Analysis Ready Data (CARD) has been processed to a minimum set of requirements and organised into a form that allows immediate analysis with minimal additional user effort. CARD also provides a level of interoperability, both through time and space and with other datasets.