PARIS — Italy’s e-Geos Earth observation satellite services company will provide radar and optical imagery from Italian and U.S. satellites to European governments as part of the Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES) project, Rome-based e-Geos announced Nov. 19.

Under a contract with the 18-nation European Space Agency (ESA) with an initial value of 3.5 million euros ($5.2 million), e-Geos will provide radar images from Italy’s three Cosmo-Skymed satellites, and optical images from spacecraft operated by GeoEye and DigitalGlobe, the principal U.S.-based commercial remote sensing firms.

ESA and the European Commission, the executive arm of the 27-nation European Union, are developing GMES as a long-term program to provide Earth observation data for civil and commercial uses from satellites being developed expressly for GMES and from existing and planned spacecraft owned by individual governments and the private sector.

In a Nov. 19 statement, e-Geos, which is 80 percent owned by Telespazio and 20 percent by the Italian Space Agency, said the Cosmo-Skymed data would be collected by its Matera Space Center in Italy. Optical data will be collected by GAF/Euromap of Germany from an existing satellite ground station in Neustrelitz.

Peter B. de Selding was the Paris bureau chief for SpaceNews.