Israeli scientists get into orbital traffic management

First involvement with Galileo

Israel's major technical university, Technion, has joined the scientific sphere of the Galileo project. It is the first Israeli involvement with the GPS alternative, and the first contract awarded by the scientific arm of Galileo.

Researchers at the technical institute are part of an international consortium that is developing a traffic management system for satellites.

Dr Pini Gurfil of Technion’s Faculty of Aerospace Engineering explained: “Crowding in space has increased and the satellite traffic is intensifying. Therefore, there is a need for a ‘traffic cop’ who will prevent collisions between satellites in space."

The Israeli researchers are developing the software for a receiver of Galileo that will gather information from every satellite. It will be able to calculate the position and relative speed of each orbiting body, to an accuracy down of a few centimetres.

The rest of the consortium is made up of scientists from Chalmers University in Sweden, the Research Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences, the Royal Meteorological Society in the UK, IFREMER – the French Research Institute for Exploration of the Sea and private companies Atos Origin and Starlab in Spain. ®

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