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New Earth Observation hub to launch

New centre will monitor climate change

A new centre, based at the new International Space Innovation Centre in Oxfordshire, will help scientists to track changes to the earth. The Earth Observation (EO) Hub, funded by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, will monitor climate change and collect information on natural disasters.

The UK government-sponsored Space Innovation Growth Strategy recently recommended that there should be a ?sovereign Earth Observation? capability in Britain, of which the EO Hub will be a crucial element. David Willetts, minister for universities and science, said: ?The Earth Observation Hub will help UK scientists make the most of the wealth of information we are collecting about our home planet, in vital areas such as monitoring the effects of climate change or so we can respond quickly to natural disasters throughout the world.

?It?s the important first step in making the International Space Innovation Centre a reality, linking regional space capabilities and promoting knowledge sharing between academia and industry. This will support further growth in a sector already worth more than £6bn a year.?

The Hub will be developed by private company Astrium, along with professional services company VEGA and SSTL, a specialist satellite manufacturer. It should be complete and operational by March 2011.

David Nicholson

Added the 27 July 2010 in category Innovation News