Press Release

A control centre in Italy for EGNOS,the first European satellite navigation system

By SpaceRef Editor
July 7, 2004
Filed under ,

Italy takes on a prominent role in European satellite navigation with the
opening on 13 July of a master control centre for EGNOS (European
Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service), the first European satellite
navigation system, at the air traffic control centre in Ciampino, near Rome,
operated by ENAV, the Italian agency for air navigation services.

EGNOS is the precursor to Galileo, the full global satellite navigation
system under development in Europe. When completed at the end of this year,
EGNOS will consist of three geostationary satellites and a network of ground
stations (nearly 40 will be deployed). These stations will transmit
information on the reliability and accuracy of the positioning signals sent
out by the systems currently in operation, the US GPS and the Russian
GLONASS. EGNOS will allow users in Europe and beyond to determine their
position within 2 m, compared to about 20 m with GPS.

After certification, EGNOS will be used for safety-critical applications
such as flying aircraft or navigating ships through narrow channels. There
will also be many mass-market applications, such as car navigation or bus
and truck fleet management, and professional or specific uses, like
assistance to blind pedestrians.

The new master control centre in Ciampino is now ready to be operated,
along with four facilities deployed in Italy: two ranging and integrity
monitoring stations, located in Ciampino and in Catania, Sicily, to pick up
GPS signals and deliver them to the control centres for processing, and two
“navigation land earth stations”, one in Fucino and the other in Scanzano in
Sicily, to send EGNOS processed signals to the geostationary satellites,
which then relay them back to users’ receivers. Other EGNOS facilities
deployed so far include two more master control centres, at the German air
traffic control centre in Langen, near Frankfurt, and the Spanish air
traffic control centre in Torrejón, near Madrid, plus a network of
stations across Europe.

With the EGNOS system, Europe transmits a positioning signal through its
own network, and receivers can now track it. The Italian facilities are now
reinforcing this first step for Europe in satellite navigation, paving the
way for Galileo.

EGNOS is a joint project of the European Space Agency, the European
Commission and Eurocontrol, the European Organisation for the Safety of Air

Press representatives are invited to the opening of the new master control
centre, on 13 July.

Event in Ciampino, Italy

The inauguration of the master control centre for EGNOS in Italy, at the
ENAV air traffic control centre in Ciampino, near Rome, takes place on 13
July as from 11h30.

The European Space Agency and ENAV welcome you to this event at:

ENAV Ciampino ACC

Via Appia Nuova, 1491 – 00178 Roma

We would appreciate it if you would reply as soon as possible to ENAV using
the attached form, or contact Ms. Nicoletta Tomiselli, (Tel.:
+39.06.8166.604 – Fax: +39.06.8166.730).

For more information on EGNOS:

ESA/ESRIN Communications Office

Simonetta Cheli

Tel : +39.06.9418.0951

ESA Navigation Department:

Dominique Detain

Tel :+ 33(0)

SpaceRef staff editor.