The European Commission - with the support of ESA - has launched the procurement of Galileo, a global navigation system composed of 30 dedicated navigation satellites and a ground infrastructure with the main control centres in Europe and a network of dedicated stations deployed around the world.
The overall programme objective for Galileo is the deployment, by 2013, of a European navigation system providing five main services, namely the Open Service, the Safety of Life Service, the Commercial Service, the Public Regulated Service, and the Search and Rescue Service.
Political decisions made by the European Parliament and the Council last year resulted in the allocation of a budget for the European satellite navigation programmes EGNOS and Galileo (€3.4 billion for the period 2007-2013) and provided for an agreement on the governance structure of the programmes. This framework provides for the deployment of the Full Operational Capability (FOC) of Galileo under a public procurement scheme, entirely financed out of the European Community budget. The European Commission (EC) acts as programme manager and contracting authority and ESA acts as its procurement and design agent.
The procurement includes the following six work packages:
- system support
- ground mission segment
- ground control segment
- space segment (satellites)
- launch services
The procurement of the Galileo infrastructure is particularly complex. To this end, the EC has opted for the procurement procedure of 'Competitive Dialogue' as set out in the EC Financial Regulation Implementing Rules. The main steps of the competitive dialogue procedure will be organised and managed by ESA in its capacity as delegated procurement agent, in close coordination with the European Commission as contracting authority.
Caption: Close up view, of the payload fairing of the Soyuz-Fregat launcher carrying ESA's GIOVE-B satellite, on the launch pad in Baikonour, Kazakhstan, on April 25, 2008.