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Commission awards final contracts making Galileo a reality

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The final two contracts, out of six, for Galileo, Europe’s global navigation satellite programme were signed on 22 June 2011 by the European Space Agency on behalf of the European Commission at the prestigious Le Bourget Aerospace Fair in Paris.

The combined valued of the two contracts is €355 million. The contract signed with Thales Alenia Space (FR), for a value of €281 million, ensures the formatting of navigation information for broadcast by the satellites. The contract signed with Astrium (UK), for a value of €73.5 million concerns the "housekeeping" of the satellites including the maintenance and correct positioning of the satellites in orbit. Signature of these contracts is essential for the deployment and provision of three initial services by Galileo in 2014:

1. the free Open Service basic signal, which everybody can use,

2. the Public Regulated Service comprising two encrypted signals with controlled access for specific users like governmental bodies and

3. Search-and-Rescue Service for humanitarian search and rescue activities.

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