EADS Astrium Ships Galileo Test Payload to ESA

[Satellite TODAY 04-28-10] EADS Astrium has shipped a payload for the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Galileo satellite-navigation system to ESA facilities in Rome, the company announced April 27.
The Proto-flight Model 1 payload includes the equipment to record and transmit location and timing data to users. This payload is part of Galileo’s four-satellite In-Orbit Validation (IOV) program, designed to prove that the Galileo system will operate as expected.
    EADS Astrium is under contract with ESA to integrate first Galileo satellite’s components. Three additional Galileo spacecraft also are expected to be launched following ESA’s risk assessment of the first mission. The $5.2 billion Galileo project was launched in November 2007 and is scheduled to begin operations by 2013 or 2014.
    “We should be ready for an April 2011 flight and this is a very significant step towards that achievement,” EADS Astrium Head of Navigation Mike Healy said in a statement.

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