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NoR Sponsorship

The NoR call aims to support research, development and pre-commercial users to innovate their working practices, moving from a data download paradigm towards a ‘bring the user to the data’ paradigm, considered essential for maintaining competitiveness of European data exploitation. The NoR Discovery Portal provides an ever increasing portfolio of innovative operational platform and cloud services operated by actors from participating countries¹. Usage of these resources shall accelerate the achievement of scientific goals and the sharing of the results, or to approach the digital information market quicker and in an easier sustainable way.

The NoR will provide successful applicants with a voucher for the selected services, allowing free-at-point-of-use consumption for research, product development and up to pre-commercial demonstration. Vouchers must not be used to support any commercial revenue flows.


Sponsorship procedure

Please check your eligibility for receiving of vouchers and your commitment of deliverables required from successful applicants:

Eligibility for awarding of vouchers

In principle any user can apply for ESA sponsoring of NoR resources for scientific and industrial (i.e. ‘value-adding’) research projects exploiting satellite-based EO data. “Research” in this context shall mean any use that is not creating revenue (e.g. value-adders can apply for sponsoring also for pre-commercial demonstration).

Due to limitations of the available financial resources and to prevent misuse, the following constraints currently apply:

  • Sponsoring cannot be requested for services where the requesting entity (or subsidiary) are involved in the service provisioning, i.e. where there would be an interest in revenue generation from the sponsoring;
  • Resource Tier Services will generally only be sponsored for ESA projects and where the request is supported by the relevant Technical Officer;
  • Scope of supporting research activities outside ESA projects in the use of platform services is to demonstrate a step-change in the speed to achieve the desired result. Consequently, any sponsoring is limited to maximum 12 months, after which the user is expected to directly fund any required NoR resources;
  • Large systematic processing of datasets can only be funded if the resulting dataset remains available free and open on the supporting platform;
  • Sponsoring of fixed allocated processing resources is acceptable only if 24/7 use of these resources is demonstrated (dynamic allocation of processing resources is preferred).
Priority in awarding of vouchers

ESA will further apply the following priorities in the awarding of vouchers:

  1. ESA projects;
  2. Entities from participating countries;
  3. Entities requesting resources in the framework of agreed collaborations;
  4. Entities from developing countries;
  5. Flagship projects valorising the used platform services;
  6. Other projects where a benefit for the funding member states is visible.

Resource Tier services are in principle directly available only to ESA EOEP-5 Block-4 projects, other applicants may consider to make use of a platform services, which act as front-ends.

Commitment and deliverables required from successful applicants
  • Use the NoR Discovery Portal to review the available portfolio of resources and identify the most suitable solution. Take note of the level of funding that can typically be sponsored through the NoR initiative. Any additional resources will need to be funded from another source other the ESA NoR Initiative
  • Fill in the Sponsorship Wizard visible on the results page of the Discovery Portal
  • Services not listed in the tool can in general not be sponsored
  • Print out the Sponsorship Wizard page and email it with the quotation to



The proposals will be reviewed by a panel of reviewers who will assess the merits of the proposed project against the following evaluation criteria:

    • eligibility and priority of the applicant;
    • accordance with the specific objectives of the opportunity;
    • merits of the proposed projects and probability of follow-on;
    • appropriate and cost-efficient use of granted resources.

ESA reserves the right to propose sponsoring of alternative resources for successful applicants, if these are considered to be a better use of ESA funds.

The applicant will be informed by email with the outcome of the evaluation (acceptance/rejection or request for modifications).

ESA reserves the right to sponsor a proposal only partially or to reject a sponsorship request without further justification.

Explore the Discovery Portal to see the listing of services and to begin the sponsorship request.