The Institute for Astronomy, Astrophysics, Space Applications and Remote Sensing (IAASARS), one of the three institutes of the National Observatory of Athens (NOA), recently signed an agreement with the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs to become a Regional Support Office of the UN-SPIDER Programme. IIAASARS conducts basic and applied research in a number of topics in astrophysics, from distant galaxies to the solar neighborhood, as well as ground based and space-borne remote sensing, earth observation and signal processing. The Institute is also committed to outreach and science dissemination for the general public and operates a very popular visitor center in Penteli.
Recently, the Institute established the Centre of Excellence for Earth Observation based monitoring of Natural Disasters (BEYOND), which situates IAASARS/NOA as a dynamic actor for regional and potentially European hazard management. Through this Centre of Excellence, IAASARS aims to enhance its capacities, drawing new creative perspectives in EO-based disaster management, rendering IAASARS/NOA into the leading south-eastern Europe/Balkan research centre of excellence, and allowing sustainable collaborative schemes to be formed.
The focus of the Centre of Excellence on the topic of natural disasters is the cornerstone of the recently signed agreement to establish IAASARS as a Regional Support Office for the UN-SPIDER programme.