About SCI


The Directorate of Science (D/SCI) is responsible for the definition, planning and execution of the Agency’s Science Programme, for setting the cooperative links with the related programmes of ESA Member States and international partners, and for the definition of the scientific elements of optional exploration programmes. D/SCI also provides, as required, scientific advice and support for programmes managed by other directorates of the Agency. In addition, D/SCI is responsible for the optional PRODEX Programme to facilitate science payload provision.

Directorate of Science is directly supported by the:
- Future Missions Department (SCI-F)
- Projects Department (SCI-P)
- Science and Operations Department (SCI-S)
respectively responsible for the implementations of the three phases in the life cycle of all Science missions, i.e. study, development and operations; and by the
- Management Support Office (SCI-M)
- Strategy, Planning and Coordination Office (SCI-C)
responsible for ensuring the objectives, strategy, planning and coordination of the resources of the Science Programme.


The SCI Portal is mainly used for activities of the Science and Operations Department (SCI-S), and includes activities of he Future Missions Department (SCI-F), and Science Coordination Office (SCI-C).

The Science and Operations Department (SCI-S) is responsible for ensuring that maximum scientific return, within applicable constraints, is maintained as an objective for the Directorate’s missions through their lifetime. The Department is providing scientific oversight of the Directorate’s missions throughout their lifecycle, managing and responsible for the operation of the Directorate’s missions once successfully commissioned, and curating the scientific data in their legacy phase, while establishing and maintaining the necessary science interfaces to the community.

SCI-S is substructure into the:
- Science Division (SCI-SC)
- Mission Operations Division (SCI-SO)
- Operations Development Division (SCI-SD)
- Data Science and Archive Division (SCI-SA)
- Mission Support Office (SCI-SX)

The Science Division (SCI-SC) is the home of the Study and Project Scientists who provide the cradle-to-grave scientific oversight of the Directorate's missions. These scientists ensure that the maximum scientific return is maintained as an objective throughout all mission phases.

The Mission Operations Division (SCI-SO) is responsible during the operations phase (from completion of in-orbit commissioning to the end of post-operations) for the overall management and the execution of the science operations of the Directorate’s missions, including the post-operational phase.

The Operations Development Division (SCI-SD) is responsible for the development of tools and infrastructure for the science operations of the Directorate’s missions. It provides input concerning the resources required for science operations and is responsible for all activities associated with the pre-launch definition and implementation of the scientific operations of these missions, including the development of the necessary tools.

The Data Science and Archive Division (SCI-SA) is responsible for the provision of data science and archive systems, as well as the technical IT services in support of missions throughout their lifecycle. SCI-SA is further responsible for the management of the data from missions in legacy phase, as well as of their scientific exploitation.

The Mission Support Office (SCI-SX) is responsible for the provision of management and engineering services, and cross-project technical solutions to the Department’s activities throughout all their phases.