spaceopal – We make Galileo fly
From November 2010 until end of June 2017, Spaceopal has been the Prime Contractor responsible for Galileo operations under the Galileo Full Operational Capability (FOC) Operations Framework contract, regulated by two control centres through a worldwide network of ground stations.
Since July 1, 2017, after a 2-year long international competitive tender, ran by the European GNSS Agency (GSA), Spaceopal GmbH will continue to operate the Galileo satellite fleet under the Galileo Service Operator (GSOp) contract and will thus ensure the provision of the Galileo services to the worldwide community.
Since the end of 2016, Galileo Initial Service is available and Spaceopal is actively supporting the completion of the system to expend the services up to full operational capability by 2020.
The fully established constellation and infrastructure of Galileo consists of 30 satellites distributed over three orbits, approx. 20 sensor stations for monitoring the navigation signals, two satellite control centres – one each in Oberpfaffenhofen (Bavaria, Germany) and in Fucino (Abruzzo, Italy), the GNSS Service Center in Torrejón de Ardoz (Spain), several mission-uplink stations and satellite control transmitting stations. As Service Operator of the Galileo system, Spaceopal GmbH provides high-quality navigation and timing for users worldwide.
The European satellite navigation programmes Galileo and EGNOS are important elements enhancing the international competitiveness of the European space and high-tech sector. Through its core business activities, Spaceopal GmbH is making a key contribution to Europe‘s performance in the field of Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) and the navigation and position and timing related services development.
Spaceopal GmbH, with headquarters in Munich, is a joint venture founded in 2009 by the partners DLR Gesellschaft für Raumfahrtanwendungen (GfR) mbH and Telespazio S.p.A. (a Leonardo and Thales Company).
The Galileo Programme
Galileo is Europe’s own Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS), providing a highly accurate, guaranteed global positioning service under civilian control. It is interoperable with GPS and Glonass, respectively the US and Russian global satellite navigation systems. By offering dual frequencies as standard, Galileo is set to deliver real-time positioning accuracy down to the metre range.
The fully deployed Galileo system will consist of a total of 30 satellites – 24 operational satellites plus six in-orbit spares – positioned in three circular Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) planes at 23 222 km altitude above the Earth, at an inclination of the orbital planes of 56 degrees to the equator.
Initial Services is available since December 15th, 2016. The constellation is currently under depoloyment, new services are tested and made available, with system completion scheduled for 2020.
Learn more about the Galileo ProgrammeGalileo
Core Business Activities
The core business activities of Spaceopal GmbH which assure Galileo operation include:
- Operations Management
- Operations Engineering and Preparation
- Maintenance and Operations (M&O)
- Galileo Service Provision (GSC)
- Launch and Early Operation Phase (LEOP)
- Galileo Data Dissemination Network (GDDN)
- Time Service Provision (TSP)
- Geodetic Reference Service Provision (GRSP)
- In-orbit Test (IOT) Services
- Integrated Logistics Services (ILS)
- Security Operations
»I joined Spaceopal several years ago and I am very proud of the results that the international team of Spaceopal has achieved since the company start-up.
Spaceopal is focused on two major directions: maintaining the excellent performances achieved in the GSOp project, as reliable partner for EC and GSA, and the company growth in new GNSS market area like G2G and commercial services.«
Paolo Minciacchi, Managing Director
»Spaceopal together with our core team has been tasked by the GSA to be the Galileo Service Operator for the next decade. With more than 7 years of experience in operating the Galileo System we are delighted to take the necessary responsibility in providing continuous and reliable Galileo services to the worldwide user community. As one of the Managing Directors of Spaceopal I am proud to lead the company and support the teams in solving all upcoming complexities. «
André Bauerhin, Managing Director
Galileo is being operated by three centres – the Galileo Control Centre GCC-I in Fucino (built by Telespazio at its Fucino Space Centre near L’Aquila) and the Galileo Control Centre GCC-D in Oberpfaffenhofen (built by the German Aerospace Centre DLR) will jointly manage the 30 satellites, the ground assets and the operational activities of the Galileo European Navigation System, whereas the European GNSS Service Centre (GSC) in Torrejón de Ardoz (located in within the National Institute of Aerospace Technologies - INTA) will take care of the service side of the Galileo system towards the different user communities.
The Galileo Control Centre (GCC) in Oberpfaffenhofen built by DLR operates the Galileo Satellites. Preparatory operations for satellites to be launched and safe routine operations for the in-orbit satellite constellation are performed simultaneously. The experience gained goes directly into the high quality operational products and processes, which can be applied on all types of missions and operational services. For the purpose of Galileo satellite and ground asset operations, DLR GfR mbH has implemented highly sophisticated and extremely reliable technical infrastructures to satisfy availability requirements up to 99,9999%. In addition, highly secure infrastructures certified up to secret level are operated and maintained 24 hours a day / 365 days a year.
Torrejón de Ardoz
The European GNSS Service Centre (GSC) is an integral part of the European GNSS infrastructure and provides the single interface between the Galileo system and the users of the Galileo Open Service (OS), and the Galileo Commercial Service (CS) for the provision of specific services beyond the Galileo Signal-In-Space (SIS) transmitted by the operational satellites. The GSC acts as an active means to engage in “in”- and “out” bound activities and it is conceived as a centre of expertise, knowledge sharing, custom performance assessment, information dissemination and support to the provision of value-added services enabled by the Galileo OS and CS core services.
The GSC is located in a fully secured environment in Madrid, Spain, within the National Institute of Aerospace Technologies (INTA) facilities at Torrejón de Ardoz, overseen by the Spanish Ministry of Defence. The agreement for the location of the Centre in Spain was signed in May 2011 by the European Commission (EC) and the Government of Spain, and it was published in the Official Journal of the European Union (in February 2012).
The three Centres in Italy, Germany, and Spain, guarantee the service and control of the constellation, the satellite localisation and navigation signal. Once fully operational, the GCCs will monitor the orbit of the Galileo satellites with an accuracy of less than 50 cm via the main control rooms and a several integrated control rooms manned 24 hours a day by certified personnel. The centres also generate, transmit and distribute the navigation signal, ensuring its integrity, quality and precision. If the system malfunctions, the end user be notified within a matter of seconds. The clocks on board the satellites are continually updated to the time of the entire Galileo system from the control centres.
Working together with international partners for the continued successful development of Galileo.
|Public authorities / Agencies|
|GSA European GNSS Agency||Prague, Czech Republic|
|Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt e. V. (DLR)||Cologne, Germany|
|Telespazio S.p.A.||Rome, Italy|
|DLR Gesellschaft für Raumfahrtanwendungen (GfR) mbH||Weßling, Germany|
|SES||Château de Betzdorf, Luxembourg|
|T-Systems International||Frankfurt, Germany|
|Vitrociset Belgium||Transinne, Belgium|
|Thales Alenia Space||Toulouse, France|
Quality Management System
Spaceopal has implemented a Quality Management System, which is certified in accordance with ISO 9001 since 2011 and covering the full scope of our business activities such as:
|Design and Implementation of Systems|
|Operations, Services and Networks for Space Programmes|
|Programme Management, Mission and Satellite Constellation Operation|
|Integrated Logistic Support|
|Data Processing and Service Provision|
Code of Ethics
The aims of spaceopal are pursued with loyalty, seriousness, appreciation, honesty, competence, fairness, team spirit and transparency by all those who work in the Company, and with absolute respect for the basic legal principles of human rights as well as the applicable laws and regulations. spaceopal shall promote these principles as well as fair competition, which it deems to be in its own interest as well as in the interest of all the stakeholders.
The activity described in this presentation is carried out under a contract managed by GSA on behalf of the European Commission and funded by the European Union.