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CEOS Members and Affiliates

The Committee on Earth Observation Satellites (CEOS), which is the body the space agencies use to coordinate their plans, proposed and initiated GOFC-GOLD. In addition to space agencies, CEOS also includes a number of affiliated organizations as members. Some of these are organizations which have a primary responsibility for ground processing and dissemination of earth-observation data, while others are organizations which make extensive use of earth-observation data.

The Canadian Forest Service (CFS) supports GOFC-GOLD's communication requirements by hosting the GOFC-GOLD Project Office, through their contribution of personnel and funds to the office. CFS is also contributing scientific and technical knowledge to GOFC-GOLD projects.

The Canadian Space Agency (CSA) provides financial support to the GOFC-GOLD Project Office. They also provide data from RADARSAT and other Canadian sensors, as part of GOFC-GOLD demonstrations.

The United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) provides technical support and advice to the GOFC-GOLD Project Office, and has helped organize and host a number of GOFC-GOLD-related meetings. Several NASA missions will provide data for GOFC-GOLD including Landsat-7, Terra, the Shuttle Radar Topographic Mission, and Vegetation Canopy Lidar. NASA has also identified substantial GOFC-GOLD-related funding for data analysis and access, as well as Land Cover and Land Use Change (LCLUC) research. NASA is also developing and supporting systems to greatly improve the speed and accessibility of large regional and global datasets.

The European Commission is contributing to, and participating in GOFC-GOLD, particularly through the Space Applications Institute of the Joint Research Centre (JRC-SAI) in Ispra, Italy. Specific initiatives include: the World Fire Web project, Global Land Cover 2000, Global Burn Area 2000, the TREES II project, work with IUFRO on global forest information systems, establishing a network to create a global burnt area product from SPOT-VEGETATION data, research on optimized vegetation indices, hosting the GOFC-GOLD Forest Fire Monitoring and Mapping Workshop, and the development of a GOFC-GOLD tropical network for Central Africa.

The European Space Agency (ESA) has provided expertise and hosted meetings for GOFC. ESA will provide vegetation cover measurements through the SAR and ATSR on ERS-2, and AATSR, ASAR, and MERIS on ENVISAT. ESA's ESRIN centre is developing a capability to provide periodic burn scar mapping products using ATSR data.

The National Space Development Agency (NASDA) of Japan has indicated that its first contribution to GOFC-GOLD will be to complete and make available data from the Global Rain Forest and Global Boreal Forest Mapping Missions (JERS-1 L-band radar data). NASDA has also made a commitment to minimize the observation gap between the L-band radar data from JERS-1 and the follow-on Advanced Land Observing Satellite (ALOS). Data from the GLI sensor on ADEOS-II, planned to be launched in 2001, will be useful for the Forest Biophysical Processes component of GOFC-GOLD

The United States National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) intends to make data from the AVHRR sensor on its polar-orbiting NOAA satellites available without restriction to all organizations participating in GOFC-GOLD. AVHRR data plays a vital role in monitoring forest fires worldwide and have also been used to produce global land cover and forest cover maps at 1 km resolution. NOAA is also proposing provision of Operational Line Scanner (OLS) on the DMSP satellites for experimental use in fire monitoring and offers to make products available on an as-needed basis.

The Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (CNES) of France can provide data from the optical sensors on its SPOT series of earth observation satellites. The new 1 km resolution VEGETATION sensor onboard SPOT-4 is expected to be very useful for periodic mapping of fire scars for GOFC-GOLD, as well as for coarse resolution land cover mapping. The high resolution data will be important for fine resolution mapping, and for validating coarse resolution products.

The British National Space Centre (BNSC) and the Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR) are supporting the development of an L-band radar (TerraSAR) which would make a substantial contribution to assessment of standing forest biomass. DLR is also leading an international project to generate forest maps of Siberia.

EUMETSAT (the European meteorological satellite agency) is investigating, with JRC, what land products could be developed for routine processing from the geosynchronous Meteosat Second Generation series.

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has offered to contribute data on national forest mapping and biodiversity characterization.

The following space agencies, and countries of origin, have expressed an interest in participating in GOFC-GOLD, but the details of their participation are still being worked out:

Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Organisation (CSIRO) - Australia
Instituto National de Pesquisas Espaciais (INPE) - Brazil
Chinese Academy of Space Technology (CAST) - China
Swedish National Space Board (SNSB) - Sweden

The Working Group on Information Systems and Services (WGISS) is a technical working group of CEOS. WGISS is currently creating a network accessible "Test Facility" infrastructure comprised of applications, data and services whose initial focus is to support GOFC-GOLD application demonstrations. The facility will evolve in an iterative fashion over the next 3 to 5 years, providing a pre-operational prototyping and development environment for GOFC-GOLD and other CEOS-supported projects.

The CEOS Working Group on Calibration and Validation (WGCV) provides a forum to discuss validation methods, protocols and opportunities for international collaboration. It will develop recommendations to the funding agencies based on these discussions. Within the Land Surface Parameters section of WGCV, GOFC-GOLD's three thematic components (forest fire monitoring and mapping; forest cover characteristics and changes; and forest biophysical processes) are being used to sort the products generated from 'moderate resolution' (i.e., 250m - 1km) optical satellite systems.

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