Press Release

Industry invited to Galileo kick-off meeting

By SpaceRef Editor
June 25, 2004
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Industry invited to Galileo kick-off meeting

The European Space Agency released 14 June 2004 the Request for Quotation to Galileo Industries GmbH for the Galileo Phases C/D/E1 of the Development and In-Orbit Validation Phase. Industry is invited to participate to the kick-off of the procurement process, to be held in ESTEC, The Netherlands, on 29 June 2004.

The development and validation phase covers the design, development and in-orbit validation of the Galileo system, including the deployment of a limited number of Galileo satellites with its associated ground segment and initial operation. An in-orbit validation campaign is planned to validate the in-orbit the performance of the system prior to its full deployment.

The procurement process for the Galileo Phases C/D/E1 will be carried out in two consecutive steps, involving a large number of competitive procurement actions over the period July 2004 to February 2005. The process leading to competitive selections of subcontractors will be carried out by the consortium Galileo Industries under the Agency’s supervision in accordance with the “Best Practices for the Selection of Subcontractors” in order to guarantee the participation of SMEs and the balanced qualitative and quantitative participation of industries in all Member States.

The Galileo Programme is being implemented in three phases:

  • Definition phase
  • Development and In-Orbit Validation
  • Full Deployment and Operations

The Definition Phase was completed last year. The Development and In-Orbit Validation phase was initiated in late 2003. During this phase an experimental satellite will be launched, to secure the Galileo frequencies filing, characterize the medium-Earth orbit (MEO) environment and test in orbit the most critical satellite technologies. The experimental satellite is to be launched before the end of 2005, and must transmit signals by June 2006 at the latest to retain the allocated frequencies.

Before 2007, the in-orbit validation will take place with a reduced constellation of four satellites, the minimum number to guarantee the provision of exact position and time at test locations. The next phase is the Full Deployment phase which will cover the manufacturing and launch of the remaining satellites and the completion of the ground segment.

Once all satellites have been fully deployed, the operation starts with the complete constellation of 27 operational satellites and three in reserve, all stationed on three circular MEOs at an altitude of 23 222 km and with an inclination of 56? to the equator.

A recent agreement between the European Union and the United States due to be officially signed at the next EU-US summit on 26 June will allow for full compatibility and interoperability of the European Galileo and US GPS. Galileo with GPS and the Russian system Glonass will become the world standard for satellite navigation. This underlines the global dimension of Galileo with agreements with other countries either signed or under discussion.

For its part the Galileo Joint Undertaking, created jointly by the European Commission and ESA, started the process of choosing the concessionaire, the future “Galileo Operating Company” which will be in charge of the final deployment and operations.

SpaceRef staff editor.