Copernicus Hackathon


Calling all remote sensing specialist, coder, engineers anyone really with an interest in using satellite data. ICHEC and NUIG are hosting Irelands first Coprenicus Hackathon.


Hackathon participants will be challenged to come up with solutions for real-world problems using Copernicus satellite data (Copernicus is the European EO programme), and will compete for a range of awards, including cash prizes (one of which is sponsored by Teagasc) . The winners will be offered a place in the Copernicus Accelerator which offers a customised business development scheme for 50 visionary startups and entrepreneurs from Copernicus Participating Countries – EU, Norway and Iceland – every year. A 30-day residency to develop solutions in ESA’s innovation-focussed Φ-lab in Frascati, Italy is another of the prizes on offer.


Details are here

Registraion is here

Groups registering early get free accommodation!




March Map of the Month

This months Map of the Month from Teagasc is a cartogram comparing the relative importance of agriculture as an employer to public admin jobs on a county by county basis

Full map is here


Since learning never ends and it’s easy to lose yourself into the many e-learning and training resources out there, here’s another one, that you might be familiar with already (started in October 2017?):

A key pillar of the RUS service is the provision of free training aiming to bridge knowledge gaps which may limit the use of Copernicus data.

However, it is not limited to training, you can find other useful information, like staying tuned on Conferences & Workshops, though some are not free.

Past courses are also accessible upon free registration for the RUS Training Account


All webinars can be replayed through the RUS Copernicus Training channel available on Youtube.

If you didn’t get the chance to attend the latest RUS Webinar – Earthquake deformation with Sentinel-1 on 19 March 2019, you can repeat the webinar here and follow the instructions in the recorded video to request and use the training kit and virtual machine to repeat the exercise in the webinar!





Saturn is famous for its bright, glorious rings but in this picture, taken during Saturn’s 2009 equinox, the rings are cast in a different light as sunlight hits the rings edge-on.

The equinox is a point in a planet’s orbit where the Sun shines directly overhead at the equator. It occurs twice per orbit and on Earth it happens in March and September. At the equinox, day and night are almost equal and the Sun rises due east and sets due west. This year, for northern hemisphere dwellers, the spring equinox occurs on 20 March.

Further afield, the international Cassini mission captured a Saturnian equinox for the first time on 12 August 2009. Saturn’s equinoxes occur approximately every 15 Earth years and the next one will take place on 6 May 2025.

When Saturn’s equinox is viewed from Earth, the rings are seen edge-on and appear as a thin line – sometimes giving the illusion they’ve disappeared. In this image however, Cassini had a vantage point of 20 degrees above the ring plane, and viewed the planet from a distance of 847,000 kilometres. Its wide angle camera took 75 exposures over eight hours, which were then aligned and combined to create this mosaic.

As the Sun is striking the rings straight on, rather than illuminating them from above or below, the shadows cast by the rings onto the planet are compressed into a single narrow band on the planet.

The rings also appear darker than usual. This can cause out-of-plane structures to look brighter than normal and then cast shadows across the rings. These Saturnian shadow puppets only appear a few months before and after the equinox. The shadows that Cassini saw revealed new ‘mountains’ in the rings, and also discovered previously hidden moonlets. Radial markings known as spokes are also visible on the B ring on the right side of the image.

Cassini explored the Saturn system for 13 years. It is a cooperative project of NASA, ESA and Italy’s ASI space agency. This image was first published in September 2009; read the full caption for more information and imaging details.

2 EO Phd Fellowships in Dublin

John Connolly alerts us to two really nice PhD fellowships in Irish Earth Observation in DCU:

•       Smart observations of management impact on peatland function (SmartBog) – PhD 1
•       Habitat mapping, assessment and monitoring with high resolution imagery (iHabiMap) – PhD 2

Both are available from the 1st of March. Further information is available here:

Watch the National Biodiversity Conference live! LIVE from Dublin Castle throughout Wednesday 20th and Thursday 21st February.

Thanks to the generous support of the EPA and the Dept Communications, Climate Action and the Environment, National Biodiversity Conference are streaming the entire conference live on their website. Viewers will be able to submit questions for the speakers via our e-poll app, join in the polls and share ideas through social media. It’s great news, as it means we can make the conference available to everyone who’s interested no matter where they are in the country and also minimise the transport emissions associated with the event.