BigSkyEarth workshop in Novi Sad

BigSkyEarth workshop in Novi Sad

BigSkyEarth COST Action organizes its third workshop, with the topic “Big Data processing in the forthcoming era of ultra-high resolutions“, in Novi Sad, Serbia, on February 26-27, 2018, at the Faculty of Technical Sciences of the University of Novi Sad. The workshop participants will discuss the challenges that arise with the expansion of remote sensing market using UAVs and with the expansion of astronomical sky surveys and airborne astronomy. The workshop will be an opportunity to seek project collaborations and discuss funding opportunities.

UPDATE: Registered participants as of Jan. 11, 2018: PDF

The fast development the UAV technology has resulted in a widespread interest in airborne remote sensing with increased spatial and temporal resolution. For example, a recent Scientific Foresight Study by the EU Parliament notes that the forthcoming technologies in the sector of precision agriculture will “make leaf level (ca. 3 x 3cm) and spots on leaves (ca. 0.5 x 0.5 cm) accessible to optical automated diagnostics. Diseases undetectable by traditional means will be prevented by automated optical sensing and intelligent planning options“. Also, ESA has now expressed its interest in High Altitude Pseudo-Satellites, which would revolutionize Earth observation, but also astronomy (as described in a recent document by the Keck Institute for Space Studies).

The BigSkyEarth workshop in Novi Sad will be an opportunity to discuss various topics related to these scientific and technological developments. The underlying challenge in all of them is Big Data due to advanced sensorics that  enables an ever increasing production of large volumes of data. The tentative list of topics suggested so far includes:

  • Data analysis methods (with a special focus on AI and deep learning)
  • Instruments and methods for aerial remote sensing
  • European astronomy in the era of sky surveys and airborne platforms
  • Earth observation and astronomy education using new technologies

BigSkyEarth will provide travel and accommodation reimbursements to a limited number of workshop participants. HERE you can find a form where you can register for the workshop and apply for the reimbursements. The final number of participants selected for reimbursement will be based on the available budget.

Updates on the workshop preparation are distributed to BigSkyEarth members – if you are not a member, follow instructions for registration in “Become a Member” section (see the right column on this page).


The host of this workshop is the Faculty of Technical Sciences of the University of Novi Sad. The workshop will take place in the Central building of the University of Novi Sad, on the address: Dr Zorana Djindjica 1, 21000 Novi Sad, Serbia.

All the information on the venue, accommodation, travel and local places of interest are available in this INFO PACKAGE.

Note: The workshop will be held in collocation with the National Student’s Conference on Big Data. The official session of the Conference will be held in the afternoon on Monday, February 26th, 2018 as a separate session in Serbian language. However, it is foreseen that students from Serbian universities also attend the join morning session of the BigSkyEarth Workshop, where the Conference will also be opened, the winners of the best papers will be announced and the prises will be awarded. Although the reminder of the morning session will be entirely devoted to the BigSkyEarth Workshop, we strongly recommend that you consider presenting a content that might be appealing to the students.


Please, follow this link to register and apply for reimbursement covering travel and accommodation expenses (there will be special considerations with respect to supporting COST policies on promoting gender balance, enabling Early Career Investigators and broadening geographical inclusiveness)::


NOTE: reimbursements are possible only to the invited speakers and to the participants coming from institutions in BigSkyEarth member countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, fYR Macedonia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Lithuania, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Spain, United Kingdom. Members of the Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory from Armenia are also eligible for grants.


All the information on the venue, accommodation, travel and local places of interest are available in this: INFO PACKAGE.

Since the Belgrade airport is not very close to Novi Sad, use this form to arrange PICKUP AT THE AIRPORT:

What is BigSkyEarth?

With the current emergence of Terabyte(TB)-scale astronomical and Earth observation systems, the traditional approach to basic functions such as data searching, analytics or visualization are becoming increasingly difficult to handle. Simple database queries can result now in data subsets so large that they are incomprehensible, slow (or even impossible) to handle, and impossible to visualize with commodity visualization tools. Astronomy and remote sensing complement each other, as they are on the quest for new Big Data interpretation capabilities: both disciplines have peculiar data, typical data processing and analysis chains, and specific models to be fed with data. However, both disciplines lack the capabilities for easily accessible semantics-oriented browsing (usage of higher level descriptive expressions) in large data archives. Therefore, joint efforts to design and develop innovative Big Data tools should help users in many different fields and set new standards for many communities. This has identified several broad challenges to this line of reasoning that need multidisciplinary approach through international networking of experts and professionals. These challenges are then channelled into Action Objectives:
Challenge A: Digital curation and data access
Challenge B: New frontiers in visualization
Challenge C: Adaptation to new high performance computing (HPC) technologies
Challenge D: New generation of scientists in the age of interdisciplinarity
For more detail see the description of the Action in Memorandum of Understanding.