Results from the ESA Astronomy Space Science Archives User Survey

The majority of ESA’s space science missions’ archives are developed and maintained by the ESAC Science Data Centre (ESDC), in coordination with the science operations centres, the instrument teams and the consortia of the various missions. On the astronomy side, the current archives are the Gaia archive, the Herschel Science Archive, the ESA Hubble Science Archive, the ISO Data Archive, the Lisa Pathfinder Legacy Archive, the Planck Legacy Archive, the XMM-Newton Science Archive and the EXOSAT Science Archive. In addition, ESDC develops ESASky, the all-sky science exploration interface, which provides easy access to high-level science data from the ESA archives and archives from major space-based and ground-based observatories.
In mid 2019, a survey requesting feedback on the ESA astronomy archives and ESASky was initiated by the ESA Astronomy Archives User Group and announced to the astronomy community via various channels. This poster presents the main results from the survey. The overall level of satisfaction manifested by the survey participants is high and is an improvement on the level of satisfaction expressed by participants in the 2011 survey (68% satisfied or very satisfied versus 60%). Individual responses express appreciation of the recent development efforts by the ESDC, highlights being e.g. the ESASky tool and ADQL queries. The future developments identified as highest priority include advanced web-based visualization and cut-out services; astroquery modules; advanced ADQL queries; and access to science platforms.

Theme – Cross-Discipline Projects, Data Interoperability, Other