Access to space data and services has become an absolute essential for governmental actors ranging from diplomatic missions to maritime authorities. Space capabilities, be it communications, satellite navigation or Earth Observation are a cost-efficient way for the Union to manage security incidents, mitigate the effects of climate change and ensure the wellbeing of its citizens.
During a workshop in Helsinki, organised by the Association of Finnish Defence and Aerospace Industries - AFDA, Rodrigo da Costa, EUSPA Executive Director answered information needs and highlighted the growing importance of using certain services from Galileo, Copernicus and in the future GOVSATCOM and IRIS2.
“One of the cornerstones of Finland’s space policy is the vast participation of new space companies and start-ups. The EUSPA workshop was a valuable opportunity to learn about the relevant leveraging options on the interface between Finnish companies and authorities and the EU,” confirmed Ilona Lundström, Chair of the Finnish Space Committee.
Resilience and Robustness with Galileo Public Regulated Service
Galileo's Public Regulated Service (PRS) is an encrypted navigation system designed for authorized governmental users and sensitive applications. PRS ensures a resilient and robust navigation experience, particularly in situations where other services may be unavailable or compromised. Unlike Galileo Open service, PRS features a unique signal and system architecture that enhances its resistance to malicious interference, such as spoofing and jamming. EUSPA is actively involved in developing the PRS user segment to meet user needs and promote its secure and widespread use. In the meantime, EUSPA is continuing the development and maintenance of the Galileo services. After the Galileo High Accuracy Service available since January 2023, the new Open Service with Navigation Message Authentication (OSNMA) is planned to be made available in the first trimester of 2024.
Secure connectivity anywhere, anytime
Satellite communications are a strategic asset for the Union and its Member States. Recent geopolitical tensions at the borders of our continent have only highlighted the need for secure, robust and rapidly deployable satellite communications capabilities.
To respond to this challenge, the European Commission introduced a new flagship programme for secure communications and high throughput connectivity called “IRIS2’’ or Infrastructure for Resilience, Interconnectivity and Security by Satellite. The new multi-orbital constellation will combine the benefits offered by Low Earth (LEO), Geostationary (GEO), and Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) satellites to provide secure communication services and broadband connectivity to European citizens, private companies and governmental authorities anywhere in the world.
“The navigation, earth observation and secured communications capabilities of the EU Space Programme will unleash an array of opportunities and applications for government use. They can support the management of critical infrastructure, or security operations in remote areas among others’’, says EUSPA Executive Director, Rodrigo da Costa.
Seeing the “full picture’’ with Copernicus
We often refer to Copernicus as “Europe’s eyes on Earth’’ and there’s a good reason behind this nickname. The EU Earth Observation Programme generates over 16 terabytes of optical and in-situ data which are translated into a wealth of information through its six thematic services.
While all services are widely used by governmental actors such as CAP paying agencies or ministries of environment (i.e., C3S), the Security Service of Copernicus and its respective components the Maritime and Border Surveillance services have become the preferred security tool at the fingertips of law enforcement authorities.
EUSPA: Delivering next generation governmental space applications
Fiammetta Diani, EUSPA Head of Market Downstream and Innovation took the opportunity of the workshop to recall the mission of EUSPA towards entrepreneurs. “From funding to space market intelligence, EUSPA helps entrepreneurs, private and public actors create solutions that combine satellite communications, navigation, and Earth Observation to address challenges or improve the safety and wellbeing of EU citizens.”
EUSPA funds a series of research and innovation projects through Horizon Europe that are promising to deliver some of the most cutting edge, space applications to benefit government users. The next Horizon Europe call will be launched in the last trimester of 2023.
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