20 FEBRUARY 2023 




  29 SEPTEMBER 2023 – 12:00 hrs noon (CEST)  

Submit your Full Proposal here – CLOSED

 28 APRIL 2023 – 12:00 hrs noon (CEST) 

Submit Letter(s) of Intent [LOI] & List of Proposing team here – [LETTER OF INTENT SUBMISSION PHASE CLOSED]

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To Prepare your travel and attendance at the LOI Proposers Workshop on 10-11 May, please find the Draft Agenda and Hotel information under CALL RESOURCES.



Announcement in the second quarter of 2024 of selected candidate mission ideas.


As part of its Future Earth Observation Programme (FutureEO-1) Segment-2, the European Space Agency (ESA) announces an opportunity for scientists from the Earth Observation (EO) community in ESA Member States, and Canada, Lithuania, Slovenia or Slovakia, to prepare proposals for ideas to be evaluated as potential Earth Explorer Missions. These missions will provide data with which to conduct research in the field of EO and/or to demonstrate the potential of new innovative EO techniques of relevance to both the scientific and the application-oriented user communities.

The Research Mission element of FutureEO-1 consists of a series of missions addressing critical Earth science issues. To-date, ten Earth Explorer missions have been selected for implementation, namely GOCE (Gravity field and steady-state Ocean Circulation Explorer), Aeolus (Atmospheric Dynamics Mission), CryoSat (polar ice monitoring), SMOS (Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity), Swarm (Earth’s magnetic field and environment), EarthCARE (Clouds, Aerosols and Radiation Explorer), Biomass (Forest Carbon mission), FLEX (Fluorescence Explorer), FORUM (new insight into planet’s radiation budget and climate), and Harmony (fine-scale motion occurring at or near Earth’s surface). In addition, four Earth Explorer 11 candidates are currently being studied in Phase 0 (CAIRT, Nitrosat, SEASTAR, and WIVERN).

Additionally, the Research Mission element of FutureEO-1 includes Missions of Opportunity developed in partnerships with space agencies outside ESA Member States, and the more agile development of small-satellite based Scout missions, separately from Earth Explorer Calls. Two Scout Small Satellite based missions are currently being implemented (CubeMAP and HydroGNSS), whilst the Next Generation Gravity Mission (NGGM) is being prepared as a Mission of Opportunity in cooperation with NASA to realise the joint MAss change and Geosciences International Constellation (MAGIC).

The motivation behind this Call is the Agency’s wish to engage the scientific community as far as possible in determining and advancing the content of FutureEO-1. The Earth Observation Strategy and accompanying Future Challenges (see Earth Observation Science Strategy for ESA: A New Era for Scientific Advances and Societal Benefits, ESA SP-1329/1 and ESA’s Living Planet Programme: Scientific Achievements and Future Challenges – Scientific Context of the Earth Observation Science Strategy for ESA, ESA SP-1329/2, European Space Agency, Noordwijk, the Netherlands, 2015) outline the wide-ranging and ambitious Earth science challenges to be addressed by this Call.

Taking into account the experience from previous calls, and in line with the spirit of the Programme, the Agency is soliciting bold, innovative ideas to be implemented as ESA-led Earth Explorer missions. Mission candidates will be selected from the proposed ideas on the basis of their innovation and scientific excellence, and fulfilment of the boundary conditions of the call.

The present Call solicits proposals for a mission whose total cost to ESA should not exceed 550 M€ at 2022 economic conditions (e.c.). Proposals with more cost-effective solutions are also strongly encouraged.

Proposals in response to the Call shall be lead and submitted by scientists with the nationality of, and living and working at an institution based in ESA Member States, and Canada, Lithuania, Slovenia or Slovakia, or teams of scientists, where proposing teams may also include scientists from non-ESA member states.


Earth Observation Science Strategy for ESA (ESA SP-1329/1)

ESA's Living Planet Programme Scientific Achievements and Future Challenges (ESA SP-1329/2)

Scientific Readiness Levels Handbook

Template for Proposal Core Team Members

Templates: EE12 Cost, Mass, Power and TRL

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