Thales Alenia Space paves way to future satellite navigation systems


Thales Alenia Space, joint venture between Thales (67 %) and Leonardo (33 %) announced that it has been awarded a contract by the French Space Agency CNES to develop a DFMC (Dual Frequency Multi Constellations) SBAS prototype in the frame of the next generation of SBAS, like EGNOS, the European navigation satellite system.

This prototype will complement both GPS and Galileo systems taking benefit of signals transmitted in multiple frequencies for better performances in particular dedicated to aviation navigation and landing, but also to any applications demanding a highly reliable and a highly accurate positioning information.

When developed, this prototype will be deployed and tested in an operational mode in real condition using a geostationary satellite. The performances will be analyzed in details according to international standard criteria as accuracy, availability, continuity and service integrity.

“With this prototype, Thales Alenia Space will continue to develop DFMC solutions for its customers. When deployed, it would be the first time in history of European satellite navigation system that a DFMC SBAS signal-in-space is emitted over Europe & Africa and we are proud to enable it”, said Benoit Broudy Vice President, Navigation Business at Thales Alenia Space.

“This contract will allow CNES and industry to prepare the DFMC performance evaluation in a representative context, and the development of future receivers; it paves the way to French industry to come out with new solutions and to stand at a very high level of knowledge in the domain that is necessary either for European needs or exportation at international level” said Jean-Pierre Diris, head of department of telecommunication and navigation projects at CNES.

“The DFMC safety-of-life service is a future evolution of SBAS, not only because it will enable the full use of Galileo for the benefit of civil aviation, but also because it will allow to increase the performance gain in ionosphere modelization and to improve the position errors control. With this contract, CNES will continue supporting industry, and Thales Alenia Space in particular, to develop and demonstrate DFMC capabilities.” – added Jean Marechal, Navigation and localization program manager at CNES

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