21 January 1999
On Thursday 21 January 1999, ESA's Director General, Antonio Rodota', has signed eight Bilateral Agreements with Air Traffic Service Providers, Air Traffic Management Service Providers and other Agencies representing Users (AENA of Spain, ANA, EP of Portugal, CNES & DNA of France, DFS of Germany, ENAV of Italy, NATS of the United Kingdom, NMA of Norway and SWISSCONTROL of Switzerland).
These Agreements establish the terms of the co-operation between the parties in support of the European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS), a system intended to provide GPS/GLONASS1 satellite based augmentation services to aviation, maritime and land users, thereby significantly enhancing the use of GPS/GLONASS for safety critical applications.
EGNOS is being designed to serve the needs of all modes of transport in the European Region (ECAC2); its built-in expansion capabilities allow the propagation of the EGNOS technology and expertise to the other regions of the world (Africa, South America, Pacific, East, etc).
EGNOS is being implemented by ESA, in the context of a more global European effort in the field of satellite navigation, in co-operation with the European Commission and EUROCONTROL and will be interoperable with similar systems under development in USA (WAAS3) and Japan (MSAS4).
ESA has taken a leading role to prepare the future European contribution to a Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS 1&2), capable of meeting the strategic, industrial and technical objectives layed down by European states.
The direct involvement and contributions of these Users in this ESA programme is of great importance in that they introduce an important operational/commercial thrust and open new avenues and opportunities for ESA's Application Programmes. EGNOS, planned to be operational in early 2002, will have installations of varying degrees of complexity in the eight countries involved in the Bilateral Agreements, as well as outside Europe. The implementation is entrusted to an industrial team led by Alcatel.
For further information, please contact : ESA Public Relations Division Tel: +33(0)22.214.171.12455 Fax: +33(0)126.96.36.19990
1 GPS: Global Positioning System, GLONASS: Global Navigation Satellite System
2 ECAC: European Civil Aviation Conference
3 WAAS: Wide Area Augmentation System
4 MSAS: Multi Transport Satellite Augmentation System