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European Space Agency confirms trust in Thales Alenia Space for operational phase of Galileo Ground Mission and the Galileo Security Facility

  • The European Space Agency (ESA), acting on behalf of the European Commission (EC) and the European GNSS Agency (GSA), has awarded Thales Alenia Space a contract (called “WP2X”) for the operational phase of the Galileo GMS (Ground Mission ) and the GSF (Galileo Security Facility).
  • The contract includes the development and deployment of new versions of the infrastructure allowing optimized Galileo services by end 2020, in particular for OS (Open Service) FOC (Full Operational Capability) and PRS (Public Regulated Service) IOC (Initial Operational Capability), as well as maintenance of the currently deployed operational versions of the GMS and the GSF.
  • Supported by the Thales Alenia Space consortium, ESA and GSA will enhance Galileo ground infrastructures and make them more robust.


Noordwijk, October 18, 2018 - Thales Alenia Space, a joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%), today announced the signature of a contract with the European Space Agency (ESA), acting on behalf of the European Commission (EC) and the European GNSS Agency (GSA),for the development and deployment of the next version of the ground-based Galileo Mission Segment (GMS) and the Galileo Security Facility (GSF), together known as WP2X.

This contract, amounting around 324 million euros, will also include maintenance of the currently deployed operational versions. The main goal of this operational phase is to achieve the Full Operational Capability (FOC) for Galileo Open service by the end of 2020. For the PRS – which many participating Member States are eager to use for their governmental applications – the aim is to reach Initial Operational Capability (IOC).

The main challenges are the modernization of the infrastructure and the enhancement of security – including cyber security. These evolutions will be carried out in parallel with maintenance and operation of the already deployed versions (Galileo services were declared operational for initial service in December 2016). The current GMS/ GSF infrastructure includes more than ten million Lines of Code (LoC).

Thales Alenia Space will lead a consortium of 15 companies, with Thales remaining responsible for cyber security and encryption, while Leonardo will be responsible for the Galileo Security Facility.

During the 28-month duration of activities (up to the baseline at end 2020), Thales Alenia Space and its partners will perform the completion of the infrastructure deployment at sites all over the globe :

•    Ground Control Centers (GCC) in Oberpfaffenhofen (D), and Fucino (It),
•    Galileo Security Monitoring Centers (GSMC), in Paris (F) and in Madrid (SP),
•    5 ULS (UpLink Stations) sites,
•    16 Ground Sensor Stations (GSS) sites.


The contract also calls for procurement of certain facilities dedicated to detection of site interference. This aims to address the growing threat that GNSS signals have to cope with.

“In continuity with the previous phase, ESA, along with the GSA and EC, will be able to rely on Thales Alenia Space’s capacity to address current and future challenges,” said Jean Loïc Galle, CEO of Thales Alenia Space. “We haven’t experienced any delays in the previous phase and we are committed to maintaining the same level of quality for our contributions together with our partners. Ultimately, it is the European citizens and all the Galileo users who will benefit from these modernized infrastructures and the enhanced services they will make possible”.


About Thales Alenia Space
Drawing on over 40 years of experience and a unique combination of skills, expertise and cultures, Thales Alenia Space delivers cost-effective solutions for telecommunications, navigation, Earth observation, environmental management, exploration, science and orbital infrastructures. Governments and private industry alike count on Thales Alenia Space to design satellite-based systems that provide anytime, anywhere connections and positioning, monitor our planet, enhance management of its resources, and explore our Solar System and beyond. Thales Alenia Space sees space as a new horizon, helping to build a better, more sustainable life on Earth. A joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%), Thales Alenia Space also teams up with Telespazio to form the parent companies’ Space Alliance, which offers a complete range of services. Thales Alenia Space posted consolidated revenues of 2.6 billion euros in 2017 and has 7,980 employees in nine countries.


Thales Alenia Space – Press Contacts:

Sandrine Bielecki    
Tel: +33 (0)492 927 094

Chrystelle Dugimont
Tel: +33 (0)492 927 406

Cinzia Marcanio    
Tel: +39 (0)641 512 685    

Funded by the EU. ESA has received funds in its quality as funding body under a Working Arrangement with GSA. The view expressed herein can in no way be taken to reflect the official opinion of the European Union, the European GNSS Agency and/or the European Space Agency. Neither the European Union, the European GNSS Agency nor the European Space Agency shall be held responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.