EDO researchers seek to accelerate the discovery, observation, and prediction of the changing Earth system to inform decisions in support of a sustainable future. They will drive innovation, development, and utilization of the next generation of Earth-focused scientific instruments and missions to address national and global challenges concerning environment hazards and national security. EDO unites the University of Arizona's internationally renowned programs in planetary, Earth, engineering, and optical sciences in partnership with NASA, industrial partners, and other universities to create a sustained center of excellence in Earth remote sensing research, education, and outreach.


The EDO will create a third pillar supporting the UA space platform, complementing the upward looking Lunar and Planetary Laboratory and Steward Observatory with a downward looking view to our home planet, Earth. Within ten years we will become the preeminent academic center of excellence in Earth remote sensing, with leadership roles in new missions in order to:

  • Address the global imperative to monitor and predict changes to the Earth system; 

  • Inform hazards mitigation and national security in the face of natural disasters, a warming climate, and other environmental stresses as the world's population  approaches 10 billion people;

  • Lead partnerships among the university, federal, regional, and commercial organizations toward a sustainable future; 

  • Enlighten and inspire the community through inclusive excellence in education, community outreach, and scientific communication.