Tilde Launches the First AI-based Virtual Assistants for the European Space

Tilde European Space Agency

Language technology company Tilde developed for the international space organization European Space Agency (ESA) an AI-based virtual assistant platform called EVA (ESA Virtual Assistant). The solution will encompass a wide range of functions, ranging from navigation with voice commands to task automation at ESA’s portals.  The project’s budget was 199,132 euros.

The main objective of the project was the development of a platform for three AI-based virtual assistants that are able to process natural language. The assistants will work at ESA’s three portals – Cosmos, ESASky and SOCCI, which are introduced at https://eva.esa.int/.

Smart ESA virtual assistants are being trained using machine learning techniques to provide answers to repeatedly asked questions and inquiries with text and voice inputs. At ESASky portal, they can perform even more complicated tasks, by guiding users through the site, responding to natural language commands and providing task automation. Digital helpers can process natural language and understand user intent even with grammatical mistakes.

 “We are proud to co-operate with ESA and implement artificial intelligence so widely in modernising the communication possibilities in different channels. The new opportunities are built on the artificial intelligence platform created by Tilde researchers. The solution platform conceived for ESA allows the machine to understand the human language – to determine the user’s intent and provide the most appropriate answer and trigger necessary actions,” says Pekka Myllylä, CEO of Tilde Eesti.

Virtual assistants not only make communication with the organization faster and more convenient. They also offer new ways to interact with the space science portals by helping to navigate in the sky and educating about the cosmos in an interactive way. With the help of virtual assistants, sky enthusiasts will have a chance to locate different astronomical objects by specifying the name of an object or providing its coordinates, zoom in to see the object closer, change the background of the sky, follow the news of space missions, and much more.

The project will be completed by the end of 2021 and after that, the virtual assistants will help registered visitors of ESA websites to find out relevant information and work in the ESA systems. New assistants communicate initially in English, and some other languages will be added later and ESA and Tilde will continue cooperation.

For further information:

Pekka Myllylä

CEO of Tilde Eesti

Phone: 5333 7108


About ESA:

European Space Agency is dedicated to the peaceful exploration and use of space for the benefit of everyone. Established in 1975, ESA now has 22 member states and for more than 40 years the organisation has promoted European scientific and industrial interests in space. https://www.esa.int/.       

About Tilde:

Tilde drives innovation in European language technologies to support languages in the digital age and enable multilingual communication. By using the best of human and artificial intelligence, Tilde develops neural machine translation systems, intelligent virtual assistants, speech technologies and provides translation and localisation services. Tilde’s award-winning technologies are serving large user base from corporate and government to SMEs and individuals. www.tilde.com

Disclaimer: The view expressed herein can in no way be taken to reflect the official opinion of the European Space Agency.