Solar Influences Data Analysis Center (Belgium)
Solar Influences Data Analysis Center (SIDC)
|Federal Government of Belgium Royal Observatory of Belgium Operational Directorate “Solar Physics and Space Weather” Regional Warning Center Belgium
|Person in charge
|Ronald Van der Linden (Director of the Royal Observatory of
Belgium) and Judith de Patoul (Head of the Space Weather
|Ringlaan/Avenue Circulaire 3
|RWC Belgium Delegate (Judith de Patoul) or the SIDC User Support
The Regional Warning Centre (RWC) Belgium is hosted by the Solar
Influence Data analysis Center (SIDC), also known as the "Solar Physics
and Space Weather" Department of the Royal Observatory of Belgium. The
SIDC's mission encompasses various activities such as research,
observations, space instrumentation development, and dissemination to
the scientific community, society, government, and industry through
operational services, public awareness, education and scientific
publications at both national and international level.
Since taking over the role of the World Data Center (WDC) for the Sunspot Index in 1981, following the legacy of the Zürich Observatory, the SIDC has become a prominent player in Europe's operational infrastructure for space weather and space climate study, monitoring and forecasting. In 2000, it was designated as the RWC Belgium within the International Space Environment Services (ISES) framework. The SIDC actively contributes to the space weather service network of the European Space Agency (ESA), developed as part of the ESA Space Safety Program (S2P) since 2003. Within this network, the SIDC hosts the ESA Space Weather Service Network Coordination Centre (SSCC) and the Solar Weather Expert Service Center (S-ESC). The establishment of the Solar-Terrestrial Centre of Excellence (STCE) in 2006 further broadened the range of expertise in areas such as GNSS and ionospheric applications, geomagnetism, and the radiation environment.
In 2019, the SIDC played a crucial role as a founding member of the PECASUS consortium, which provides 24/7 space weather services for the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). Collaborating with STCE partners, the SIDC acts as the central advisory production hub within the PECASUS network.
Additionally, the SIDC held the directorship of ISES from 2019 to 2023.