The launch of the two operational Galileo IOV (In-Orbit Validation) satellites on 20 October is a first in the history of the European Union. It is a moment to celebrate this unique and ambitious European collaboration.
The European Commission is organising a celebratory event in Brussels. Details to be confirmed shortly.
The event will comprise direct re-transmission of the launch, an exhibition on European Commission activities in space and an opportunity to meet the Galileo engineers behind the programme. Other forms of entertainment such as live music will also be provided.
Logica has announced the signing of two new contracts for the European Galileo satellite navigation Full Operational Capability (FOC) programme. The contracts with the two ground system prime contractors, whose respective contracts with the European Space Agency (ESA) under a programme of and funded by the European Union were signed at the Paris Air Show in Le Bourget on 22 June 2011. A €42 million contract is for elements of the Ground Mission Segment (GMS). Working with Thales Alenia Space France, Logica will have security responsibility for GMS, plus provision of the new Galileo Security Facility and encryption Key Management Facilities. The Galileo Security Facility will act as the security control centre for the complete Galileo system and will be installed at the two Galileo Security Monitoring Centres planned for France and the UK.
The Logica GMS facilities are the heart of Galileo’s Public Regulated Service (PRS).
The second contract, valued at €13.5 million, is for elements within the Ground Control Segment (GCS) of the programme. Working with Astrium UK, Logica will provide:
• The Satellite Constellation Control Facility – the core of the GCS – which will control and operate the Galileo 30 satellite fleet once fully operational
• The Satellite Key Management Facility, the security facility for the GCS.
Galileo Services Association welcomes with enthusiasm the European Parliament Resolution of 7 June 2011 on “Transport applications of Global Navigation Satellite Systems – short- and medium term EU policy”. With the dedicated budget being exhausted, 2010 would have been the year of the last FP7 call for GNSS – thereby effectively removing Europe’s opportunity to continue boosting downstream industry and taking advantage of the momentum created by the large investment made in Galileo. However, after more than one year of committed lobby campaign, hope is reborn among European GNSS downstream Research and Innovati on actors when reading the recent resolution of the European Parliament.
Among the decisive statements raised in the resolution the European Parliament reminds that “the commercial transport applications of GNSS and Galileo represent a growing global market which should be secured as far as is possible for the economic benefit of European industry and for the creation of skilled jobs” and, more widely, that “investment in this sector has implications for all EU policies, and whereas its expansion and implementation will have a direct impact on the realisation of the EU 2020 Strategy and from the point of view of developing the potential of the European market in GNSS applications and services so as to create jobs and enhance Europe’s competitiveness.”
The European Parliament “calls on the Commission to ensure that the EUR 100 m likely to be underspent in payment appropriation for research within the Seventh Framework Programme is made available for the development of GNSS applications.”
As already stressed frequently by industry, Europe has a golden opportunity but only for a very limited period of time. The world enters into the time of multi-GNSS multi-sensor technologies, enabling the development of crucial applications and services for Europe. An absence of funding up to 2014, delaying the technological progress as well as knowledge in the GNSS domain, constitutes a huge risk both for European GNSS programmes and Europe’s competitiveness.
The resolution (P7_TA-PROV(2011)0250) follows the report3 of the Committee on Transport and Tourism (A7-0084/2011) on GNSS applications in transport, adopted on March 24th, 2011. These papers deal not only with short- but also medium-term EU policy and set out the main issues of GNSS in transport domain.
The reallocation of the budget mentioned by the European Parliament would enable the publication of a 4th Call for Proposals for GNSS applications within FP7. From a short term perspective this would prevent a critical rupture of the way to European Excellence and Competitiveness in the GNSS field and must be followed by substantial funding for the coming years.substantial funding for the coming years.