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European Commission


Brussels, 11 October 2012

Galileo will boost economy and make life of citizens easier

A Must have for Europe

"If Europe really wants to be considered as a serious partner by the United States and keep control of essential functions for its economic development, it must demonstrate that it has the willingness and the means to be present in Space. Galileo is a key test case for the European Union in that respect."

Carl Bildt, ex Prime Minister for Sweden, 2001

"Galileo is of strategic importance for the independence of the European Union regarding satellite navigation and will offer a relevant contribution to the implementation of the Europe 2020 strategy for growth. It will significantly contribute to the economic recovery of Europe and address major challenges such as sustainable transport"

Antonio Tajani, European Commission Vice-President, responsible for entreprise & industry policy, 2011

In this memo:

What is Galileo?

Galileo makes life easier for citizen and economy

Example: Improved mobility for elderly

€124 bn market value to increase to €244 bn by 2020

System architecture is based on 30 satellites

Two phases of deployment: In-Orbit validation and full operational capability

What is satellite navigation?

EGNOS the European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service

What has been achieved until now by the Galileo and EGNOS Programmes?

How much have the Galileo and EGNOS Programmes cost?

How much money is required to complete the two Programmes?

How was it possible to reduce the budgetary request by 500 million?

When will Galileo and EGNOS be operational?

Will Member States be able to use the PRS for military purposes?

History of the Galileo programme

What is Galileo?

Galileo will allow the users to know their exact position in time and space, just like GPS, but with greater precision and reliability. Galileo is the Programme of the European Commission to develop a global satellite navigation system under European civilian control. It will be compatible and, for some of its services, interoperable with the American GPS and Glonass (Russia), but independent from them.

Galileo makes life easier for citizen and economy

Europe needs Galileo to be independent in a sector that has become critical for its economy and for the well-being of its citizens. The positioning and the timing signals provided by satellite navigation systems are used in many areas of the economy, including power grid synchronization, electronic trading and mobile phone networks, effective road, sea and air traffic management, in-car navigation, search and rescue service. Thus, it is estimated that already 6-7% of Europe's GDP, or €800 billion, relies on satellite navigation applications. These are among the strong benefits of Galileo:

  • Higher precision. In a combined GPS-Galileo use, compared to GPS alone, the higher number of satellites available to the user will offer higher precision which will allow positions to be determined up to within a few centimeters.

  • Economic advantages: The global annual market for navigation satellite products and services is currently valued at 124 billion Euros (see below).

  • The overall economic impact is estimated to be around 90 billion euro over the next 20 years (source GSA studies Market Monitoring and Forecasting).

  • The number of satellites in view will grow dramatically and become fully independent in the case of failure to either GPS or Galileo.

  • The higher number of satellites will also improve the signals in high-rise cities as well as in mountain regions, where buildings/hills can obstruct signals from satellites that are low on the horizon.

  • Galileo will also provide a better coverage at high latitudes than GPS, thanks to the location and inclination of the satellites. This will be particularly interesting for northern Europe.

  • Signal for European enterprises. By capturing the signals for testing purpose on which to base their innovative applications European industry can use the improved signal for the development of new navigation services (see example below).

  • In moments of crisis a special service will protect the functioning of management of critical transport and emergency services, police work and border control via its highly robust encrypted signals. It will ensure greater protection against spoofing and jamming.

  • Galileo will guide aircraft: it can offer a cheaper and more efficient alternative for civil aviation users improving air traffic management, reduction of fuel consumption and safer landings.

Example: Improved mobility for elderly

A company in Graz (Austria) is developing enhanced GPS systems to improve mobility and self determination of the elderly. With the outstanding improvement of the Galileo/GPS signal the elderly can be better guided home for example when get lost in cities. The existing GPS-only receiver chipset will be replaced by an innovative miniaturised GPS/EGNOS/Galileo chipset supporting a tailored acquisition aiding functionality. The chip will be based on a 3-frequency GALILEO/EGNOS/GPS satellite navigation receiver concept. The manager of the company said: “With Galileo Europe becomes independent in using basic GPS applications, which together with Galileo can achieve considerably enhanced applications. These achievements would not have been possible with one single system”.

€124 bn market value to increase to €244 bn by 2020

The global annual market for global navigation satellite products and services is currently valued at 124 billion Euros and is expected to grow over the next decade, leading to an estimated market size of €244 billion in 2020.

Like the Internet, a global navigation satellite system is a service enabler rather than a standalone service. It acts as a catalyst for economic activities, leading to the creation of added value and jobs in a wide range of connected sectors (upstream and downstream markets) and at macroeconomic level through socio-economic benefits for society as a whole.

The expected benefits of Galileo and EGNOS can be divided into three main components:

  • Thanks to global navigation satellite systems (GNSS), new business opportunities are developing. Innovative uses of satellite navigation are emerging, such as advanced driver assistance systems, assistance for the elderly and the blind, fleet management and road user charging (tolls). Most of these applications will only become possible with the increased precision of Galileo. The cumulative direct benefits emanating from the GNSS downstream market are estimated to amount to €14 billion over the next 20 years.

  • Thanks to new applications made possible by Galileo, businesses will benefit from more efficient production processes. For example, agriculture will realise increased crop productivity through more accurate seeding and spraying of fertilizers which in turn helps protect the environment and can lead to increased food production.

  • All sectors of the economy will gain from increased speed of delivery of goods to customers with a reduced impact on the environment as well as greater safety for road users.

  • Investment in the development of Galileo supports hundreds of European companies ranging from multi-billion-euro conglomerates to specialised SMEs. Most of the funds spent on the Galileo and EGNOS programmes flow directly into the European economy.

In addition, the technological advances that come about as a result of Research & Development investment in the space industry are transferred to firms in other sectors in the form of ‘spill-over’ effects. Research by Oxford Economics1 suggests that such spill-over effects are very large, with R&D investment by the aerospace sector generating a social return of around 70% - i.e. every €100 million invested in R&D leads to an increase in GDP of €70 million in the longer term in other sectors (e.g. health and medicine, transport, computer science).

The overall economic impact is estimated to be around 90 billion euro over the next 20 years (source GSA studies Market Monitoring and Forecasting).

System architecture is based on 30 satellites

The complete Galileo constellation will consist of 30 satellites. With the satellites taking about 14 hours to orbit Earth at altitudes of 23 222 km, there will always be at least four satellites visible anywhere in the world. The 30 satellites will be in three orbital planes at an angle of 56 degrees to the equator, which will provide coverage right up to the polar regions.

Galileo also depends on an extensive ground infrastructure, which will have to make sure that time and positioning data are extremely accurate – a single billionth of a second clock error means a positioning error up to a range of 30 cm. A global network of sensor stations will receive information from the Galileo satellites and send that information to control centres located in Europe. The control centres will compute integrity information and synchronise the time signal of the satellites, relaying those information back to the satellites via a global network of about fifteen up-link stations. Finally, the satellites will send the relevant timing and integrity information to the receivers.

In-Orbit Validation and Full Operational Capability

The Galileo programme has two main phases:

1. During the In-Orbit Validation (IOV) phase, the system is assessed through tests, the operation of two experimental satellites and a reduced constellation of four operational satellites and their ground infrastructure. The first two Galileo satellites were launched into the first orbital plane on 21 October 2011, followed by another two in the second orbital plane scheduled in October 2012.

2. The Full Operational Capability (FOC) phase consists of the deployment of the remaining ground and space infrastructure, including an intermediate initial operational capability phase with 18 satellites in operation (the four IOV satellites plus 14 others).

2012: 4 (IOV) satellites

End of 2014: 18 satellites (4 IOV + 14 FOC launched in 2013 and 2014)

End of 2015: 26 satellites(4 IOV + 22 FOC in total)

What is satellite navigation?

Satellite navigation is based on the principle of triangulation: I can calculate my exact position if I know my exact distance to three points of which the exact position is known. In order to know my exact distance to those three points, the most accurate way is to see how much time it takes to get a signal from those points, knowing that the signal travels at the speed of light (approximately 300.000 kilometres per second).

EGNOS the European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service

Already since 1st of October 2009 Europeans benefit from improved GPS signals in Europe provided by EGNOS, the European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service. EGNOS comprises just three satellites including more than 40 ground stations, and acts as an enhancement to the US-based GPS system for safety critical applications in aviation and marine environments. It provides freely available positioning data throughout Europe to any EGNOS-enabled GPS receiver.

Among the ground stations 34 are ranging and integrity monitoring stations (RIMS) receiving signals from the US GPS satellites; there are four mission control centres to handle data processing and differential corrections counting; and there are six navigation land earth stations that manage accuracy and reliability data for sending to the three satellite transponders for relay to end-user devices.

EGNOS is hosted by the European Space Agency, the European Commission and Eurocontrol and is the first pan-European satellite navigation system. Similar services are provided in North America by the Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS), and in Japan by the Multifunctional Satellite Augmentation System (MSAS).

What has been achieved until now by the Galileo and EGNOS Programmes?

In 2008 the European Commission was charged with the overall management of the Galileo and EGNOS Programme.

The Commission’s first priority was to launch the procurement of space and ground segment components required to take the Galileo Programme to full operational capability. Of the six lots tendered, four were attributed in the course of 2010 and the remaining two lots were signed in June 2011 during the Le Bourget fair (IP/11/772, IP/10/1382,  IP/10/7) This means there is now a concrete deployment calendar to he first system milestone, initial operational capability, which is due to be achieved in 2014. In parallel, work has continued on the first four operational satellites which are being built under European Space Agency (ESA) auspices; two of which will be launched on 20th October 2011 (IP/11/1220) and a further two scheduled in October 2012 aboard a Soyuz rocket from Europe's spaceport in French Guiana.

  • Progress has also been made with regard to the ground segment which consists of telemetry and telecommand centres, Galileo sensor stations, navigation message uplink and a number of service-specific infrastructures. Two telemetry and telecommand centres have been inaugurated, with a further three in the process of completion. A total of twelve sensor station sites are close to implementation. Two ground control centres in Fucino (Italy) and Oberpfaffenhofen (Germany) have also been completed.

  • All three services provided by EGNOS were launched: the Open Service of EGNOS in October 2009 (IP/09/1399), the Safety-of-Life Service destined for use by the aviation community was declared operational in March 2011 (IP/11/247) and the EGNOS Data Access Service was launched in July 2012 (IP/12/856) . The Safety-of-Life service enables precision approaches and renders air navigation safer as well as helps reducing delays, diversions and cancellations of flights. In addition the free-to-use technology allows airports to increase their overall capacity and cut operating costs (IP/11/247). The system has proven its reliability and is rapidly being adopted in sectors beyond aviation, notably in agriculture and geodesy, with road and maritime applications also being evaluated.

How much have the Galileo and EGNOS Programmes cost?

The definition and validation phase of Galileo over the years 2000 and 2001 was financed by the EU and European Space Agency (ESA) and cost the EU contribution around €80 million (coming from the 5th Research and Development Framework Programme). A similar amount was contributed by ESA.

Total costs of the development phase which was launched in 2003 under the auspices of the ESA is currently around €2400 million, with the EU providing roughly up to two-thirds of the funding.

The deployment phase (so-called FOC phase) is entirely financed by the EU's budget. Of the total €3405 million made available, €560 million were re-attributed to the development and validation phase and around €2400 million are earmarked for the deployment phase of Galileo. €417 million have been set aside for EGNOS.

The total cost of implementing EGNOS to date has been around €1100 million. Of this, more than 400 million were financed by ESA, €200 million came from previous EU financing programmes and €417 million have been made available under the current budget framework.

The annual operating costs of Galileo are in the order of €800 mio per year. The revenue is estimated to be in the order of €80 million per year on average, in constant prices in 2011 (source: the Impact Assessment accompanying the new Regulation proposal).

How much money is required to complete the two Programmes?

EGNOS is now operational and does not need additional budget for completion, over and above what is earmarked in the current budget. With the entry into operations of the Safety-of-Life service, EGNOS will enter the next phase of its life-cycle.

As regards Galileo, costs for the completion of the ground and space infrastructure and for the exploitation of Galileo and EGNOS are estimated at €1bn per year on average over the next two decades without escalation. In the Commission budget proposal from 29 June 2011, a total of €7bn have been proposed for the next financial perspective. A stable, long-term and sustainable governance framework for the exploitation of the Galileo and EGNOS programmes and a transition to it needs to be defined. With this mind, the European Commission presented its proposal on the repeal of Regulation 683/2008 with a new GNSS Regulation at the end of November 2011 (IP/11/1478).

When will Galileo and EGNOS be operational?

Galileo will provide 5 services.

  • The first Galileo service will be the Open Service which can be used for free by everyone and is planned to be delivered from 2014. A wide domain of applications can be based on this service, from in-car navigation to high precision farming and other enhanced satellite navigation applications.

  • Public Regulated Service (PRS) ensures that key services dependent on satellite navigation such as the police and ambulance services, continue to function in moments of crisis, terrorist threat or natural disaster. Testing and early demonstration activities are foreseen for 2014 for the PRS.

  • Search and Rescue Service – this service is unique to Galileo – in times of emergency, for example a sailor lost at sea, not only can he send his distress signal but with Galileo he will receive a confirmation message that he has been located and that help is on its way.

  • The Commercial Service – provides authentication and high accuracy-services for commercial applications such as in mining, surveying and mapping. This service will provide the highest level of precision.

  • The Integrity Monitoring Service provides vital integrity information for life-critical applications, the most common use for this is in aviation (precision approaches and en-route guidance).

Galileo satellites will be launched in pairs aboard Soyuz rockets from Europe's spaceport in Kourou, French Guyana.

As of end 2012, it is expected that two satellites will be launched every quarter. The use of the Ariane-V rocket, which will be adapted to allow the launching of four satellites simultaneously, is also being considered.

Will Member States be able to use the PRS for military purposes?

  • GNSS Regulation (EC) n° 683/2008 mentions, in its second recital, that the Galileo programme aims to set up the first infrastructure for radio-navigation and positioning by satellite specifically conceived for civil purposes. This has been reiterated by the Council at several occasions. Nevertheless, this primarily civil vocation of the system does not stand in the way of a potential use by the military. Indeed, although Galileo is a civil programme, nothing at the technical level prevents the services provided by the system resulting from this programme to be used for example in missions related to the safety of the Member States.

  • As laid down in the PRS decision it is up to each Member State as well as other PRS-participants such as the Council and the EEAS, to decide on the use that it intends to make of the various services offered by the system to satisfy their own needs whilst respecting the common minimum standards, as contained in the Commission proposal.

History of the Galileo programme

Galileo was born in the nineties when the European Space Agency initiated research and development programmes in that area in partnership with the European Commission and the civil aviation community. For perspective, the first satellite of the GPS system was launched in 1978.

Discussions on a European system started in the late nineties and in 1999 the Council called on the Commission to develop a global system managed by public civil authorities. After the failure of negotiations on a public-private partnership, the Parliament and the Council in 2008 decided to complete the constellation using EU budget.

1 :

The Case for Space: The Impact of Space Derived Services and Data (July 2009)

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