European Space Agency (ESA)

ESA Digital Twin Earth Challenge

The ESA Digital Twin Earth (DTE) Challenge seeks to stimulate applications which combine Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Big Data from Copernicus Sentinels and other Earth observation (EO) data to provide forecasting on the impact of climate change and responding to societal challenges.

The Challenge

The ESA Digital Twin Earth Challenge (ESA DTE Challenge) aims to create an interactive model of the Earth, which arises from the integration of individual models that accurately reflect diverse physical aspects of our planet.

Thus, ever more reliable information about past, present and future changes in the Earth system can be obtained. With this information numerous societal challenges can be addressed.

The underlying models are based on measurements and observations, while being complemented with state-of-the-art analytical techniques such as AI.


Submissions are welcome addressing key societal challenges, including:

  • Smart Cities
  • Food Security
  • Health Issues
  • Tourism/Leisure
  • Coastal Monitoring

The ESA DTE Challenge aims to increase the exposure and understanding of EO data combined with AI (Artificial Intelligence), IoT (Internet of Things) and Machine Learning, Cloud Computing and Data Analytics. Those tasked with evaluating the submissions to this challenge will therefore focus on the potential for technological feasibility, rather than its maturity.

Prizes 2020

Cash Prize

EUR 10,000 cash prize

Satellite Data

Possibility to access EUR 10,000 worth of commercial datasets from the Copernicus Contributing Missions in the Copernicus Data Warehouse (financial support by EC)
Extra EUR 10,000 Cash Prize if your concept gets selected as Copernicus Masters 2020 Overall Winner
Additional Prize


Submissions to ESA Copernicus Digital Twin Earth Challenge will be assessed against the following criteria:


How innovative is the idea and its proposed expansion within the market?

Copernicus Relevance

Does Copernicus data significantly contribute to the application solution or does it also work without?

Technological Feasibility

Does the technical implementation of Earth observation data allow for future scalability that will answer business needs?

Commercial Viability Index

Does the solution have real market potential? How many users you may reach?

Impact index

How significant is the participant’s problem for society / the environment / business / EU policy?

About ESA

The European Space Agency (ESA) is Europe’s gateway to space. Its mission is to shape the development of Europe’s space capability and ensure that investment in space continues to deliver benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world.

To contribute to the success of Copernicus, ESA is exploiting its 35 years of expertise in space programme development and management. While the Copernicus programme is politically led by the European Union (EU), ESA is the overall coordinator of the Copernicus Space Component and will, inter alia, ensure the uninterrupted delivery of data from the Copernicus Sentinel satellites and from an important number of Copernicus Contributing Missions at national, European and international level. Following the launch of Sentinel-1A on 4 April 2014 the Copernicus programme has entered its operational phase, serving users with an ever-increasing mix of satellite imagery and other data.


Choose your challenge
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Submit your Idea

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