Artificial Intelligence for COld REgions

Developing a collaborative approach for applying Artificial Intelligence
methods in earth observation for the cryosphere.


In “Artificial Intelligence for Cold Regions” (AI-CORE) we will develop a collaborative approach for applying Artificial Intelligence (AI) methods in earth observation and thereby breaking new ground for researching the cryosphere. Rapidly changing ice sheets and thawing permafrost are big societal challenges, hence quantifying these changes and understanding the mechanisms are of major importance. Given the vast extent of polar regions and the availability of exponentially increasing satellite remote sensing data, intelligent data analysis is urgently required to exploit the full information in satellite time series. So far, extensive competences in data science, AI implementation, and processing infrastructures are decentralized and distributed among the individual Helmholtz centers. In the era of big data, cloud computing and extensive earth observation programs, a core challenge is to establish and consolidate a joint platform for AI applications by combining existing competences and infrastructures with new developments serving especially AI applications. Four geo-scientific use cases from cryosphere research will be used to demonstrate the new collaborative AI approach. These use cases are challenging due to diverse, extensive, and inhomogeneous input data and their high relevance is given in the context of climate change. To address these case studies, several AI methods will be developed, tested, evaluated, and implemented in the data processing infrastructure of the project members by combining all distributed capabilities into a joint platform. A “best practice” approach will be identified to solve each of the individual research questions. Once established, this knowledge and the AI-CORE platform can be used even beyond the exemplary use cases to address current and upcoming challenges in data processing, management, data science, and big data. The experience of this collaborative approach will be of very high value for the next research program PoF IV. Furthermore, the networking and knowledge exchange among AI-CORE members will facilitate synergies between methodsbased research and direct AI applications beyond the immediate use cases.


The project addresses the key challenges of information and data science and digital transformation in the 21st century as identified by the Helmholtz Association: implementing a value added chain, beginning with the abundantly available data (big data), generating knowledge (in the context of cryosphere research), and creating an innovative and trendsetting approach of utilizing artificial intelligence (AI) in a transboundary framework which ensures a consolidation of the collaboration among the Helmholtz community that goes beyond the centers involved in this project. New basic concepts for applying AI in cryosphere research will be elaborated in an interdisciplinary approach, which will result in the development of a long-term “toolbox” available to all Helmholtz centers in the future.

The Helmholtz Incubator

AI-CORE is part of the Helmholtz Information and Data Sience Incubator. The Incubator strengthens information and data-based resarch at the Helmholtz Association with the aim to bring together outstanding experts from all the Helmholtz Centers in a think tank and promote pioneering research trhough innovative projects and initiatives. Please visit the Helmhotlz Incubator website for further information.

"Outstanding experts from all the Helmholtz Centers come together in this think tank and promote pioneering research through innovative projects and initiatives"


For further information, please contact:

Dr. Andreas Dietz (Project Leader)
German Aerospace Center (DLR)
Earth Observation Center (EOC), German Remote Sensing Data Center (DFD)
D - 82234 Weßling (Oberpfaffenhofen )
Email: Dr. Andreas Dietz