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Airbus Begins Galileo Second Generation Satellite Production

Arrival of the Galileo to the Friedrichshafen cleanroom. Credit: Airbus

Ibadan, 5 December 2023. – Full production has begun on the six Galileo Second Generation (G2) satellites at Airbus’ site in Friedrichshafen, Germany, with the arrival of the first satellite Flight Model structure from Beyond Gravity in Zurich. After initial preparation, the panels will travel to other Airbus sites before final integration and testing at Friedrichshafen. Furthermore, the Galileo G2 satellites are scheduled for launch in the coming years to support the initial deployment and validation of the G2 System.

Jean-Marc Nasr, Head of Space Systems at Airbus, said: “After the successful design phase, we are now kicking off production in earnest of the state-of-the-art Galileo G2 satellites. Our teams in Friedrichshafen are working with engineers across Europe to meet the challenging schedule and finalise these sophisticated satellites, which will further improve the global Galileo system opening up even more opportunities for services on Earth.”

Furthermore, the G2 satellites will incorporate enhanced navigation antennas, which will help improve the accuracy of the flagship European Global Navigation Satellite System. The spacecraft, featuring electric propulsion and higher-strength navigation antennas, will also have fully digital payloads that will be reconfigurable in orbit, enabling them to actively respond to the evolving needs of users with novel signals and services.

ESA’s Director of Navigation Javier Benedicto also said about the satellites, “This new milestone is a testament to the capabilities and dedication of the European industry and reaffirms ESA’s commitment to redefining the boundaries of satellite navigation. I cannot wait to see the many parts come together to bring to life an even better performing Galileo system, so this EU programme can continue serving European and world citizens.”

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