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Galileo Starts Serving the Globe TODAY

Europe’s own Galileo satellite navigation system has begun operating, with the satellites in space delivering positioning, navigation and timing information to users around the globe.

Today, the European Commission, owner of the system, formally announced the start of Galileo Initial Services, the first step towards full operational capability.

Further launches will continue to build the satellite constellation, which will gradually improve the system performance and availability worldwide.

ESA has overseen the design and deployment of Galileo on behalf of the Commission, with system operations and service provision due to be entrusted to the European Global Navigation Satellite System Agency next year.

After five years of launches there are now 18 satellites in orbit. The most recent four, Galileo SAT’s launched last month, are undergoing testing ahead of joining the constellation next spring.

The full Galileo constellation will consist of 24 satellites plus orbital spares, intended to prevent any interruption in service.

ESA Director general Jan Woerner noted, “For ESA, this is a very important moment in the programme. We know that the performance of the system is excellent.