The European Space Agency (ESA) has confirmed that the pioneering Medium-Earth Orbit satellite is a 'full mission success' and has contracted Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL), a spin out from the University of Surrey, to continue operations for an additional year as the satellite continues to perform and provide valuable Galileo services.
Under a €28M contract, the 660kg satellite was developed by SSTL for ESA. The satellite was designed, built and tested in a rapid (30 month) programme and was launched, on schedule, on 28 December 2005.
The primary mission was to secure the Galileo frequency filings at the International Telecommunications Union (ITU). The satellite also played a crucial role as a test-bed for the Galileo payload units, providing a representative signal-in-space for ground-based experimentation with Galileo signals and characterizing the radiation environment for the Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) which will be used by all future Galileo satellites.
Following successful launch and commissioning, the GIOVE-A team undertook an intensive six-week payload in-orbit test (IOT) campaign using the 25m dish at the Science Technology and Facilities Council (STFC) Chilbolton station. Through these activities ESA was able to claim the frequency filings three months before the license expired.
Since commissioning the satellite has achieved a remarkably high operational availability with signals being broadcast for 99.8% of the time over the last year. The primary atomic clock, fundamental to all future Galileo satellites in providing highly accurate positioning and time reference signals, has been operating continuously since June 2007.
Thirteen sensor stations around the world are used by ESA to track GIOVE-A and GPS navigation signals and these have demonstrated that Galileo will be a highly accurate navigation system.
In addition to plaudits from ESA, the European Union and the navigation user community, SSTL’s GIOVE-A team has been recognised with the prestigious Royal Aeronautical Society’s (RAeS) Team Silver Award, as well as the Geoffrey Pardoe Space Award for an exceptional contribution to space, demonstrating first class risk and project management skills in designing and placing into orbit a complex, yet cost-effective satellite. The RAeS awards are considered the most prestigious and long-standing awards in global aerospace honouring achievement, innovation and excellence.
Stuart Miller | alfa
A novel hybrid UAV that may change the way people operate drones
28.03.2017 | Science China Press
Timing a space laser with a NASA-style stopwatch
28.03.2017 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
The Institute of Semiconductor Technology and the Institute of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, both members of the Laboratory for Emerging Nanometrology (LENA), at Technische Universität Braunschweig are partners in a new European research project entitled ChipScope, which aims to develop a completely new and extremely small optical microscope capable of observing the interior of living cells in real time. A consortium of 7 partners from 5 countries will tackle this issue with very ambitious objectives during a four-year research program.
To demonstrate the usefulness of this new scientific tool, at the end of the project the developed chip-sized microscope will be used to observe in real-time...
Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...
In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
20.03.2017 | Event News
14.03.2017 | Event News
07.03.2017 | Event News
30.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
30.03.2017 | Studies and Analyses
30.03.2017 | Life Sciences