Belgium embarks on the Copernicus programme


As part of the Copernicus programme, the ESA and the EU have decided to grant funding in the order of €93.7 million to eight Belgian companies for the development of several projects related to the Sentinel 7 and Sentinel 8 space missions.

Two of these projects come from the Liège Space Centre and account for total funding of more than 13 million euros. The first involves participation in the CO2I instrument aboard the Sentinel 7 (CO2M) mission to measure carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere. From 2026, this set of satellites should provide very precise data that will enable States to better understand their carbon footprint, verify national reports on CO2 emissions using independent data, and set more ambitious targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The second project concerns the LSTM (Land Surface Temperature Monitoring) mission, which aims to map the planet's surface temperature and evapotranspiration rates with a resolution 400 times finer than at present. The mission will focus primarily on the needs of the agricultural community, in order to produce a sustainable improvement in productivity.

Other Belgian companies have also been granted funding, including AMOS, for the development of the main instrument of the CHIME mission (Sentinel 10) and Thales Alenia Space-Belgium, for the supply of solar panels.