University of Coimbra (Portugal): The University of Coimbra, founded in 1290, is the oldest academic institution in the Portuguese speaking world and one the most renowned worldwide. It includes 8 faculties and over 30 research units and centres, providing teaching and conducting research in almost all study fields – Exact Sciences and Engineering, Life Sciences, Architecture, Medicine, Social Sciences, Humanities and Sports -, as well as several structures devoted to promote science and technology, culture and sports.
For the last two decades, the University of Coimbra has been developing and consolidating an innovative scientific and technological network to support economic development, in particular by bringing the university closer to the society and external entities (e.g. companies, local municipalities, and associations). As an illustration of these network achievements, the University of Coimbra has 49 active patents, from which 5 are already licensed to companies for commercial use, plus more than 100 R&D projects involving companies and about 1,000 scientific papers published in ISI journals. The Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia da Universidade de Coimbra (FCTUC, Science and Technology Faculty of the University of Coimbra, Portugal) has more than two centuries of existence. Presently, it has approximately 470 Professors/Researchers who draw on an involvement in cutting-edge research to assure the best education at all levels to the over 7000 students from multiple countries. Eleven departments offer programs leading to the Bachelor, Master and Doctoral degree programs in campus
and overseas through strategic partnerships.

 

Science [&] Technology, AS (Norway): Science [&] Technology AS is a part of S[&]T Corporation (S[&]T Corp.), a privately owned SME conducting high-tech projects and consultancy. S[&]T Corp. was started in 2000 and has grown to a diverse group of 90 professionals holding PhD and MSc degrees in computer science, mathematics and physics. The Norwegian daughter company was founded in 2010 and has today 12 employees situated in the Oslo Science Park. The S[&]T team focuses on understanding the complexities of science and implementing them in a professional and operational manner to serve socio-economically important applications demanding extreme performance and accuracy. This is done through a set of custom development projects for our customers and implementation of new innovative earth observation services. In 2015 we established Silvisense, our forest monitoring service operating initially in Norway and Portugal.

S[&]T has a history and proven track record of successfully participating in many complex software projects (both production and research, both proprietary and open source) for clients such as ESA, NATO, major European Space industries (Airbus, Volkswagen, SCANIA), and scientific research institutes (DTU, NERSC, BAS). One of the core values of S[&]T is promoting innovation. For this reason, S[&]T has a dedicated business unit focused on spinning out novel ideas and technologies into sustainable business ideas and profitable daughter companies. We use our broad knowledge and expertise within developing demanding and unique scientific applications, combine it with our sound engineering skills and develop or support novel companies. One of the most recent is Orbital Eye, a company delivering pipeline integrity monitoring services to oil and gas suppliers using Copernicus Sentinel-1 data.

At S[&]T all staff members hold a Master‘s or PhD degree in subjects such as computer science, mathematics, physics, aerospace engineering, etc. The S[&]T engineers are either skilled domain experts themselves, or capable of communicating and working together at all levels with the clients who are, ensuring smooth cooperation and successful completion of the projects S[&]T is involved with.

 

Vlaamse Instelling voor Technologisch Onderzoek (Belgium): VITO (~700 people) is a private non-profit research organization having 100% of the share owned by the Flemish Government. VITO acts as a hinge between Universities (fundamental research) and industry (operational systems/solutions). The remote Sensing (TAP) department counts ~90 people working mainly on automatic image processing for different applications: environment, agriculture, forestry, food security and security (disaster management and law enforcement). During the last decade, VITO-TAP also developed a segment working on sensor design, development and miniaturization for UAV and small satellite missions as well as a segment focusing on Hyperspectral data acquisition and processing. Because of the multi-disciplinary background of the employees, VITO-TAP offers real end-to-end expertise in remote sensing.