Tomorrow, satellites of Europe’s Galileo navigational system are scheduled for launch into space atop a Russian-build Soyuz rocket, taking off from the spaceport in Guiana, South America.

These are the 9th and 10th such satellites – launching at 3.08am BST on Friday 11 September – and two more in the constellation are planed for launch by the end of the year. By 2020 the full system will consist of 26 functioning satellites, and six spares in orbit. The first navigational services will be offered to customers next year.

Galileo is designed to provide Europe with an independent navigation capability to break the continent’s dependency on the American GPS system. Although Galileo will function on its own, receivers will use signals from both systems, will significantly improving the reliability and accuracy of the service.

People using this navigation system in city centres often find contact with low-lying satellites is hampered by tall buildings. Devices which use both GPS and Galileo facilitate availability of more satellites, increasing the chances of finding several overhead and within range.

The Galileo programme this year released new analysis software to compensate for the distortion of navigational signals which takes place in the Earth’s upper atmosphere. Applying these mathematical remedies will allow positional accuracy of up to a few centimetres with some services.

Galileo, which has been in development since the 1990s and is costed at £4.4bn, is to offer a free public service, and also encrypted signals for regulating critical transport and emergency services, law enforcement and border controls.

This article titled “Look up to the skies … Galileo satellites help us navigate below” was written by Stuart Clark, for The Guardian on Thursday 10th September 2015 20.29 UTC

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like

15 Magical Hotels to Visit in Your Lifetime

1. Katikies Hotel, Santorini, Greece Hanging on the cliffs 300 feet above…

US Airstrike Vaporizes Hospital – Killing 9 Doctors Without Borders Charity workers and Injuring 37 others

Nine staff dead and up to 37 injured in Médecins Sans Frontières hospital as charity says bombing continued for 30 minutes after it raised alarm

More people used Google to learn about Bernie Sanders than any other Democratic candidate – in EVERY U.S. state

Bernie Sanders wins the search wars on debate night as more people…

California’s Kern County settles for $1m over sexual assault by sheriff’s deputy

Lawsuit is second settled by sheriff’s office in a week in county revealed by the Guardian to have a program of attempted cash payoffs to vulnerable women