Since 25 July a Processing and Archiving Centre (PAC) at DFD has been operating for three of the four orbiting Sentinel satellites. The PAC is being run on behalf of ESA for the European Commission. This is where raw data are turned into satellite image products, stored in the German Satellite Data Archive (D-SDA), and made available from there to users worldwide.
Already three months after launch, data from Sentinel-1B were being routinely processed and archived at DFD. After only four and a half months regular processing also of Sentinel-3A OLCI data could begin on 1 July 2016. For the Copernicus satellite Sentinel-1A, such processing has been the case since March 2015 at the PAC. Full implementation of the Sentinel PAC is planned for the end of 2017, when data from four Sentinels will be processed after the launch of Sentinel-3B, which is structurally akin to Sentinel-3A.
Daily, over 1300 products are being processed based on sensor data from the ocean and land colour instrument OLCI on Sentinel-3A, and over 400 GB of associated data are stored in the long-term archive. Up to 800 GB per day are expected. With Sentinel-3B the daily volume of data will increase to 1.6 TB.
The two Sentinel-1 satellites are already supplying many times that amount. Over 6000 GB (6 TB) from the satellite pair are processed and archived every day. By the end of 2016 data will also arrive via the relay satellite EDRS-A. This will increase the useful acquisition capacity of the two radar satellites and the amount of data to be processed up to 11000 GB (11 TB) daily. This data volume is equivalent to the storage requirements of ca. 1000 cinema-length films in HD image quality. Despite this enormous amount of data, the PAC is configured to additionally reprocess existing Sentinel data at DFD at any time with the latest algorithms to generate useful new geo-temporal data sets.
ESA plans to release Sentinel-1B data in September, followed by Sentinel 3A ones. At present, data from Sentinel-1A and Sentinel-2A are available for all registered users free of charge from the Sentinel Scientific Data Hub (https://scihub.copernicus.eu/). At the end of the year these as well as other Sentinel data will also be available from the national Copernicus data portal CODE-DE.