Space exploration is one of the European Union’s priorities, mainly because it drives technological innovation and scientific progress in fields such as recycling, healthcare, biotechnology, energy management, and environmental monitoring. Currently, the European Union has two main space programs:
Copernicus – Earth observation
Considered the most ambitious civilian Earth observation program to date, Copernicus is a set of complex systems that collect data about Earth through satellites and sensors on the ground, and in the air and sea.
Copernicus provides policy-makers, businesses and the general public with updated and reliable data on how the planet and its climate are changing. These data help predict future climate trends, and they also have many other applications, including:
- Urban planning
- Nature conservation
- Agriculture and forestry
- Disaster relief
Galileo – Satellite navigation
Galileo is the European global satellite-based navigation system. It is the European version of the American Global Positioning System (GPS) and the Russian GLONASS. Galileo is the first satellite navigation system under civilian control, and although it is compatible with both the American and the Russian systems, it is also autonomous. With a real-time positioning down to the meter range, it will become much more accurate than GPS.
Galileo has many potential applications, including:
- Traffic and transportation management
- Rescue operations
- Civil protection
In addition to disseminating the Copernicus and Galileo programs and the business opportunities they open up for Chile, the Eurochile Business Foundation promotes the use of satellite data for developing new applications and uses at the domestic level to make better use of the resources and mitigate climate change, thus fostering the Chilean innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem.
Since 2018, Eurochile has been a member of the network of Copernicus Relays, whose members act as bridges between Copernicus and the program end-users: companies, start-ups and citizens.