General Conditions for the Utilisation of ESA’s EO data
ESA / “the Agency” means the European Space Agency.
The PI (Principal Investigator) means the duly empowered representative of the
entity having registered for the use of data within his/her project and accepted
the Terms and Conditions.
Project means the proposed and ESA-accepted use of data by the PI.
The ESA Earth Observation data (ESA’s EO data) means the data generated by the ERS,
Envisat and Earth Explorer missions. The ESA EO data can be split into two major
a) The free dataset including data collections available on-line without any
technical or financial constraints attached. The free dataset comprises
most of the data generated by the ESA EO missions.
b) The restrained dataset for which access priorities are managed differently,
due to technical and financial constraints. The restrained data set comprises
the data which are acquired or processed after specific PI demand (mainly
the SAR data originating from the ERS and Envisat missions) and the datasets
of very large volume (i.e. not suitable for transfer via Internet).
A. Data Supply
A.1. ESA provides the agreed amount and type of ESA data to the PI on-line for the
free dataset and on-line or on media for the restrained dataset.
A.2. ESA, while duly considering the interests of the PI, reserves the right to
review, modify, suspend or terminate delivery of data at any time during
the Project in the event that
a) Funding of ESA mission or associated processing facilities operations
cannot be sustained
b) Satellite or related ground system failure occurs
c) Planned activities of related ESA systems are suspended or cancelled
in order to carry out special activities that ESA consider of high priority
d) Status check of the respective satellite(s) or performance evaluation is
needed. ESA may modify their mission operation plan(s) at any time, should
they consider such corrective action necessary for ensuring mission success.
A.3. The PI accepts to modify, suspend or terminate the utilization of ESA Data for
the Project when so requested by ESA. The PI shall have no right whatsoever to
claim for compensation or damage as a consequence of ESA’s decision to terminate
or suspend the delivery of ESA data.
A.4. ESA does not guarantee the suitability of ESA data for the purpose of the Project
and shall not be held liable for any damage derived from the use of such data by
the PI or any third party.
A.5. ESA only upon request guarantees the confidentiality of communications, reports
and other documentation submitted by the PI, to the extent mutually agreed.
A.6. In the case of the restrained dataset, the PI accepts that his project has a
lower priority in case of conflict for SAR instrument planning with a project
of higher priority. Projects of higher priority (i.e. Category-2 projects)
an operational use of SAR data, as defined in the
Revised ESA Data Policy for ERS, Envisat and Earth Explorer Missions
B. General conditions of data utilisation
B.1. The PI is required to accept these Terms and Conditions before being able to
receive ESA data. For the free dataset, the registration and acceptation of
these Terms and Conditions will authorise full access on-line to the requested
data sets. For the restrained dataset, the PI is required first to submit a
project proposal, which shall be reviewed by ESA with regard to scientific
relevance and required data. ESA notifies the PI of the acceptance of the
proposal, assigning amaximum quota for instrument planning and/or for
product delivery. Access to datais then granted upon acceptance of these
Terms and Conditions.
B.2. The PI acknowledges and takes account of scheduling and processing constraints
both at satellite and ground segment levels.
B.3. The PI understands that acceptance of these Terms & Conditions includes general
acceptance of the related ESA Data Policy.
Revised ESA Data Policy for ERS, Envisat and Earth Explorer Missions
B.4. The PI assumes full responsibility for the approved utilisation of data,
including utilisation with co-investigators. The PI provides ESA with
a detailed list of all coinvestigators.
B.5. The PI is authorised to undertake duplication of data (sets) as necessary for the
performance of the Project, without any charges to ESA.
B.6. In the case of the free dataset, the PI may be granted the right for onward
distribution by ESA only upon request and confirmation by ESA.
B.7. The PI and all authorised co-investigators together shall, at any time, observe
the following conditions of use:
a) Use all ESA data received exclusively for purposes of the Project
b) Indemnify ESA for the full amount of any loss, expense, cost or liability
(other than arising from any act, omission or direction of ESA) resulting
from anyutilisation of data, for which ESA might be held responsible for
any reason whatsoever;
c) Not assign any rights, obligations or interests herein without the prior
written approval by ESA
B.8. In the cases described under A.2, the PI has no right whatsoever to claim for
compensation or damage as a consequence of the decision of ESA.
B.9. The PI waives any claim against ESA in the event of any damage directly or
indirectly arising from malfunction or interruption in the transmission of
data for any reason whatsoever.
B.10. Costs of equipment to receive or read ESA data or any other costs associated
with the execution of the Project will be borne and / or secured by the PI.
B.11. The PI informs ESA in case of problems with data reception or data quality.
B.12. The PI shall publish results of the Project in publications of international
renown and present results at dedicated workshops organised by ESA. For a
period of six months after Project completion, the PI has the exclusive right
to publish the results; thereafter, this right will be shared with ESA unless
the PI can demonstrate a character of Confidentiality* of the results.
B.13. Any publication whatsoever resulting from work carried out using ESA data
shall contain the following sentence: “Data provided by the European Space
Agency.” The PI provides ESA with a free copy of any publication. ESA shall
at any time have a royalty free right of publication and dissemination of these
publications, unless the PI claims a character of Confidentiality* of his
own results and to the extent that such reproduction and dissemination do not
conflict with the rights of third parties.
C. Intellectual Property Rights
C.1. The PI acknowledges the full title and ownership, including all derived rights,
by ESA of all ESA data.
C.2. The PI clearly marks all ESA data and analysed information, irrespective of the
form in which it is produced), as follows: © ESA (year of reception).
C.3. In his sphere of influence, the PI guarantees respect of ESA’s intellectual
property rights and reports any evidence of unlawful use, including such
of third parties, immediately to ESA in writing.
C.4. ESA’s title and copyright of data shall not prevent recognition of copyright in
favour of PI which may arise as a result of the latter’s own interpretation of
ESA processed data, inputs of data or knowledge from other sources.
C.5. In case of emergence of own intellectual property rights from direct utilisation
of ESA data, the PI grants ESA free of charge, an irrevocable and non-exclusive
license to use such intellectual property in the field of space research and
technology. The PI informs ESA of applications for patents or similar forms
of legal protection for such intellectual property within two months from the
filing date. ESA treats such information as confidential during a period of
eighteen months following original application, unless published before the
expiration of this period by the PI.
* The term Confidentiality* does not refer to classified information terminology.