On 20 October 2011 the first ever Soyuz launch, from Europe's Spaceport in French Guiana, will put into orbit the first two satellites of the Galileo Constellation.
The first phase was GIOVE A and B: launched in 2005 and 2008, these missions secured the Galileo frequencies and tested new technologies needed for satellite navigation. Now the full Galileo system is getting ready with the start of this new phase.
This ‘In Orbit Validation’ phase means what it says: checking in orbit of the European positioning system, using satellites that function as the nucleus of the final constellation, fully representative of the other satellites that.will follow
This story shows the Galileo satellites as they are assembled and tested in Rome before being shipped to their launch site.
It includes interviews with Giuliano Gatti, ESA Galileo Procurement Manager (in English and Italian), Nigel Watts, ESA IOV Procurement Manager in English, Peter Honold, Astrium (in English and German) and Eugenia Licitri Thales Alenia (in English and Italian).
More background information can be found on: http://www.esa.int/esaNA/galileo.html