About the Project
EO2HEAVEN (Earth Observation and Environmental Modelling for the Mitigation of Health Risks) is a research project co-funded by the European Commission as part of the 7th Framework Programme (FP7) Environmental theme. It started on 1st February 2010. The duration of the projects is 40 months and the allocated European Commission funding is more than Euro 6 million.
EO2HEAVEN contributes to a better understanding of the complex relationships between environmental changes and their impact on human health.
EO2HEAVEN has followed a multidisciplinary and user-driven approach involving public health stakeholders who have worked closely with technology and service providers in both the Earth observation and in-situ environmental monitoring domain.
As a result of this collaboration EO2HEAVEN specified an open and standards-based Spatial Information Infrastructure (SII) and developed a software platform for: a) scientists to find, access, process and explore environmental and health data and b) decision makers to visualize summarized information.
To achieve this objective the project has studied health data collections and developed models to relate environmental data with exposure and health data. The SII includes bridging capabilities at the syntactic and semantic levels to and between environmental and health systems.
In addition EO2HEAVEN has examined the different Earth observation products, especially those resources available free of charge for the research community, like the imagery from the Landsat satellite programme, which was launched 38 years ago.
Throughout the life span of the project the stakeholder requirements from three different case studies have been assessed and the technical solutions proposed by EO2HEAVEN were evaluated through an iterative process, thus ensuring that the solutions can be applied on a wider scale. A first case study was developed in Dresden (Germany) addressing the environment effects on allergies and cardiovascular diseases. A second case study was located in south Durban industrial basin (South Africa) and also dealt with the pollution and respiratory diseases. The third case study was conducted in Uganda and investigated the impact of climatic variables on the outbreak of cholera.
Specifically the involvement of International Co-operation Partner Countries (ICPC) such as Uganda and South Africa have been an important asset for the project in order to study and understand the complex implications of the climate change for the emergence of infectious diseases.
EO2HEAVEN has opened up its pilot implementation to external participation through the creation of an OGC (Open Geospatial Consortium) Interoperability Testbed and by initiating a Pilot implementation in response to GEO HE-09-01/02 tasks (Information Systems for Health and Monitoring and Prediction Systems).
EO2HEAVEN has specified and implemented the SII as an open architecture based upon international standards and adaptive geospatial web services in alignment with the large-scale initiatives INSPIRE (Infrastructure for Spatial Information in Europe) and GMES (Global Monitoring for Environment and Security). This open approach is considered essential for the sustainability of the project and involves several measures such that all essential specifications of the EO2HEAVEN architecture will be publicly available, all core components of the EO2HEAVEN spatial information infrastructure will be provided as Open Source, and methodological guidelines and tools for the development of additional environment and health applications will be developed. EO2HEAVEN builds upon the results of FP6 and FP7 projects that have already dealt with open and generic architectures for environmental risk management and the integration of sensor networks such as ORCHESTRA (Open Architecture and Spatial Data Infrastructure for Risk Management), SANY (Sensors Anywhere) and GIGAS (GEOSS, INSPIRE, GMES – An Action in Support). The results of the project directly address current goals of GEOSS (Global Earth Observation System of Systems).