Internationaler Kongress Kommerzielle Anwendung der Satelliten-Navigation

Munich, April 26th , 2001

I am very grateful to be given the opportunity to share with you some thoughts on the European Union strategy regarding satellite navigation, namely “GALILEO”.

At its last meeting in Stockholm, the European Council has fully supported the European Commission approach on GALILEO. The Transport Council has subsequently adopted a resolution enabling to proceed with the program and in particular with the development phase of GALILEO in close co-operation with the European Space Agency.

I shall first explain the reasons why GALILEO is of so much importance to Europe.

I shall afterwards describe in a few words how the system will look like and will be financed, managed and controlled.

Finally, I intend to present the timetable and some concluding remarks.

1.Why is Satellite Navigation important for Europe?

Already centuries ago, it was often vital to be able to determine geographical positions with high reliability. In the recent past, this was achieved by spreading terrestrial navigation aids over large and accessible land areas.

A few years ago, the idea of getting navigation information via “satellite-based signals” has revolutionised the development of future navigation infrastructures all over the world. Two working examples have been developed and reached operational status: the military systems GPS and GLONASS, respectively controlled by USA and Russia.

However, it has been widely demonstrated that those current satellite navigation systems do not provide adequate performances to meet European multimodal transport and multi-sector needs.

Effectively, the American GPS suffers poor availability in urban areas and northern latitudes. These existing systems are controlled and operated by military authorities. And these military operators do not provide sufficient guarantees on the quality and continuity of service to civilian users.

However, satellite navigation is becoming central not only to all forms of transport, but also to many other activities. For example, power plants management, telecommunication and banking networks synchronisation, oil fields exploration (to name but a few) are increasingly (and dangerously) dependent on a single satellite navigation system for precision timing and positioning. This dependence, on a single source controlled from outside, raises important questions of a strategic nature for Europe.

GALILEO should however not only be conceived as a “competitor” to already existing systems. It must, on top of ensuring our independence, be seen as a “compatible and complementary” element to existing systems. It will for example reinforce tremendously the reception of signals in cities.

On April 5th, the Transport Council has highlighted in its resolution:

  • The considerable prospects offered by the use of that technology,
  • The risks involved in the dependence of numerous public and private activities on systems over which Europe has no control,
  • The advantages that this system will offer in terms of redundancy, interoperability, complementarity and guaranteed service.

  • In more detail there are four dimensions which underline the importance of Galileo as a European priority program:

a) The transport dimension:

It is clear that satellite navigation will increasingly play a fundamental role in transport in the future. GALILEO will be part of intelligent infrastructures, helping to ensure safety, streamline traffic operations, reduce congestion and environmental damage and support multi-modal development. Advanced navigation systems are a prerequisite for efficient transport management and sustainable mobility, which are themselves critical for economic growth.

    b) The economic/industrial dimension:

The accurate tracking of mobiles (persons or goods) will revolutionise our economies and ways of living. The vast array of potential applications of a satellite timing, positioning and navigation system has been highlighted through various studies run both at EU and national level. The Economic opportunities that these systems offer are very interesting: there is a potential global market of Ä40 billion by 2005. The challenge is to ensure that Europe can take a fair share of this global market.

GALILEO will help our industries to stay at the leading edge of the development of future applications.

I am particularly pleased to see initiatives as the one we are living here today: these initiatives demonstrate once more the real interest of downstream actors (like receiver manufacturers, service providers, etc.) in a system like GALILEO.

    c) Employment:

The presence of European industry in this high technology field, which is beginning to develop exponentially, will help to secure and augment employment. It is estimated that putting the satellite navigation infrastructure into place would support around 100,000 jobs by 2020.

    d) Regulatory issues:

Increasingly, European regulatory requirements could envisage the use of information systems relying on positioning and/or timing signals. This could, for example, be the case for electronic fee collection, in the environmental field or in agricultural or fisheries surveillance.

GALILEO will allow for the necessary certification to take place (this is today not possible with current systems). Certification, in turn, will ensure the confidence of regulators and users in the adequacy of such systems.

2.How will the future Galileo system look like?

At this stage of the work, the experts are leaning towards a system based on a constellation of 30 satellites in Medium Earth Orbits.

The system architecture for Galileo will provide a global navigation service that includes provision of integrity. The opportunity therefore exists for States outside Europe to meet their institutional obligations to validate the Galileo Signal over their territories by participating in GALILEO.

As regards regional coverage over Europe, the deployment plan will be in two stages. The first stage will be “EGNOS”, a GPS augmentation system, broadcasting improved navigation signals via geostationnary satellites.

The EGNOS ground structure will then be progressively integrated in the ground segment of GALILEO.

GALILEO, emitting its own quality signals, will not exclusively be a new Satellite Navigation System: it is also aiming at taking advantages and synergies of incorporating existing navigation infrastructure and hence lead to the implementation of a coherent “European Radio Navigation Plan”.

3. What will be the future management of the GALILEO programme?

For the coming development phase of GALILEO, the EU Member States need to agree the setting up of a unique management structure with a common management board.

The Commission proposes this management structure to be based on the establishment of a “Joint Undertaking” in which the European Commission, ESA, Member States as well as private investors can become partners.

The advantages of this approach, which can proceed swiftly, are numerous and will guarantee full transparency in the management and insure open competition. Due to the outstanding experience and competence in space programs, a particular role as “Technical Expert” will be given to the European Space Agency.

The Joint Undertaking will be replaced by another suitable structure as from 2006 for the deployment and operations phase.

4. How will GALILEO be financed?

The estimate of the overall GALILEO cost reaches 3.25 billion EURO, i.e. the equivalent of some 200 km of high-speed train infrastructure in open country. This cost will be shared between public and private investors. On the public side, the EU Commission and ESA will contribute with similar amounts already defined, and all Member States wishing to contribute with further amounts will be able to do so.

The results of the macro-economic analysis already show that GALILEO will return several times the initial investment as of 2010, with a reasonable slice of the market.

It is envisaged that the private sector will significantly invest into GALILEO and participate in a real public private partnership.

Major industrial players interested in GALILEO have already expressed their strong interest on the project in a Memorandum of Understanding, in which they have stated their willingness to collect between them some 200 MEURO for the next development phase of GALILEO as initial investment.

The service requirements identified by the private and public sector will be consolidated in order to establish viable revenue streams for the investors. This overall service definition will be presented to the Council in June 2001.

5. Timetable

The development phase of GALILEO is being started as a result of the “green light” from the last Transport Council this April. The development phase will be followed by an early provision of initial GALILEO services before 2005 in order to attract early customers as requested by most users during the definition phase. Full deployment of GALILEO will be reached in late 2007.

6. Conclusions

GALILEO, which will be built according to the needs of users, will significantly improve the availability and reliability of satellite navigation.

GALILEO will foster the competitiveness of the European Industry in a market that is rightly perceived as one of the most promising one.

GALILEO will enable a common European Transport policy and harmonise future transport guidance systems. It will also improve Europe’s position towards other regions in the world since it will be used world-wide. Europe will contribute to the development of key infrastructures in various parts of the world. Galileo will also ensure an enhanced safety and rescue ability of the Member States authorities.

Finally, I would like to state that the European Commission considers GALILEO as the appropriate answer to the technology challenges we face in Europe and a possibility to provide a significant contribution to the future world-wide seamless Global Navigation Satellite System.

GALILEO will, amongst others, help to implement the European Single Sky policy and contribute to a solution for the current Air Traffic congestion.

As with already well-known successful European technology projects such as Airbus and Ariane, GALILEO will continuously need supporters in the political and industrial community that have a clear vision and are convinced that the European citizens and the European Industry need their own independent satellite navigation system.

Similarly to the “Internet”, which has revolutionised the information technology market, Satellite Navigation could very well revolutionise the transport and info-mobility market.

Ladies and Gentlemen: Thank you for your attention and continued support.