The European Commission’s Directorate-General for Defence Industry and Space (DG-DEFIS) has awarded two new H2020 mission evolution studies to assess how the future evolution of European GNSS (EGNSS) could be beneficial for innovative and demanding autonomous applications. The new service contract shall assess the feasibility of an integrity service complementing EGNSS High Accuracy in the 2030+ timeframe on top of the current baseline of EGNSS services to feed the evolving needs in autonomous transport.
The advent of autonomous transport has the potential to reduce human-based errors, to improve the efficiency of some operations, and to be the enabler of new uses and new applications. However, this will require their operations to be at least as safe as the existing ones.
The European Commission’s Directorate-General for Defence Industry and Space (DG-DEFIS) has awarded two new H2020 mission evolution studies, ICHASE and ITHACA:
- ICHASE project is led by Thales Alenia Space with the support of FDC, Université Gustave Eiffel, GEA Space, know.space;
- ITHACA project is led by GMV with the support of TNO, VVA and GMV-NSL.
The activities to be carried out shall analyse the feasibility of an integrity service complementing European GNSS (EGNSS) High Accuracy in the 2030+ timeframe to feed the evolving needs in demanding new applications without disrupting the current business models of established service providers. A panel of experts will be consulted to validate the integrity concepts and the main outcomes of the project. The studies will assess the respective merits of various directions for the Galileo and EGNOS services to evolve and to build the steps needed before the operational introduction of such new services.
New emerging applications will require more demanding positioning solutions to be able to offer innovative services in the future. What could be the role of EGNOS and Galileo in the 2030+ timeframe for demanding and innovative applications?
The European Commission is currently specifying the long-term evolution of the EGNSS programme, including new services based on Galileo and EGNOS. The use of an integrity service complementing EGNSS High Accuracy in the 2030+ could result in the provision of an accurate and reliable positioning solution, which would translate into the overall improvement of future innovative and demanding services in autonomous transport.
Galileo is the European Union’s Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) providing an accurate, guaranteed global positioning service under civilian control. Galileo is operational since the Initial Service declaration at the end of 2016. As part of the main services provided by Galileo, the Galileo High-Accuracy Service (HAS) shall provide in the near future a high-accuracy positioning and synchronisation information.
EGNOS is the European SBAS and augments GPS L1 C/A civilian signal by providing corrections and integrity information for positioning and navigation applications over Europe. EGNOS version 3, will in the near future augment both GPS and Galileo constellations in the L1 and L5 bands and will extend the service area to the entire landmasses of EU Member States. New EGNOS services could be implemented in further releases of EGNOS as an option for the integrity service complementing EGNSS High Accuracy.
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