Europe has a long tradition of using earth observation data from its own national missions and from those of international partners. The American Landsat system operated by NASA and USGS since 1972 is representative of a number of such international earth observation missions. Especially systems with high geometric resolution are increasingly being constructed by private companies and operated commercially or in public-private partnerships (PPP). Indeed, some of the Copernicus core services would be unable to provide their products without access to this data. An example is disaster mapping, which is crucially dependent on the rapid availability of high-resolution satellite data in the optical and microwave ranges.
Therefore, Copernicus has made bilateral and commercial agreements with the relevant mission operators and European data distributors to provide access to these data for Copernicus. The data are collected and made available at ESA's so-called Data Warehouse (see link). This also includes data from DLR's TerraSAR-X and TanDEM-X missions.
Ground- and aerial-based monitoring systems (in-situ components)
Satellite measurements alone are often insufficient for generating highly precise geoinformation. Data from space has to be calibrated and validated. Satellite data has to be combined with other types of geoinformation to generate quality information products. The management of data from ground and aerial in-situ measurements and other Copernicus geoinformation is the responsibility of the European Environment Agency (see link).