The European Data Relay System began servicing Europe’s Earth observing Copernicus programme a few days ago, transferring observations in quasi-real time using cutting-edge laser technology.
ESA astronaut Thomas Pesquet, NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson and Roscosmos commander Oleg Novitsky blasted into space from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on 17 November, at 20:20 GMT.
An Ariane 5 rocket has launched four additional Galileo satellites, accelerating deployment of the new satellite navigation system.The Ariane 5, operated by Arianespace, lifted off from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana at 13:06 GMT (14:06 CET, 10:06 local time) carrying Galileo satellites 15–18. The first pair was released 3 hours 35 minutes and 44 seconds after liftoff, while the second separated 20 minutes later.
Horizon 2020 is the European Union programme for innovation and research, with a goal to secure Europe’s competitiveness globally. A targeted area is represented by European programmes for satellite navigation: Galileo and EGNOS. For this purpose, the third Horizon 2020 call was opened, encouraging the development of user-oriented applications and stimulating competition in the European GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite Systems) industry.