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EO Research and Beyond


EO Research Process Re-engineering

Trying to see the things from the EO scientist viewpoint, the idea behind the RSS service is that the research process can be conveniently separated in different sub-processes or steps and the effort related to some of such steps can be drawn from other sources, when available.

A generic research process can be schematized as in the left panel of the figure below, while in the central panel the sub-processes where RSS can have a support role by providing resources to EO scientists are highlighted. Three phases can be distinguished. The first phase of the research process is composed by three steps going from open questions to hypothesis formulation. The first step, selection and definition of the question to deal with, initiates the process. The second step represents the sub-process aiming at gathering, organizing and evaluating available information, in order for the scientist to formulate the hypothesis in the successive third step. In this phase, RSS can contribute playing the role of information/resources provider.

The core phase is composed by steps four to six. In the fourth and fifth sub-processes, experiment and data analysis, respectively, RSS can provide a very significant support. The experiment, that in the case of EO research means data processing, can be supported by RSS not only by means of the mentioned grid processing environment, but also by making available resources and services such as support to algorithm development, algorithm integration, product access/delivery. The data analysis step can be also supported by RSS by providing specific reference data sets, processors and tools, in order for the researcher to confirm or re-formulate the hypothesis in the successive sixth step. Finally, the third phase regards the results publication. This sub-process, can also benefit from RSS resources such as the Join&Share area for e-collaboration, the "Reference Data Sets" (or RDS) and the WebMap/Feature/Coverage Server environments. Besides the usual channels, such environments can allow the scientist to communicate and publish his results, sharing knowledge, information and data within the EO community.