Galileo Security Monitoring Centre back-up site moves to Spain

The EU Commission adopted a decision, on 24 January 2018, to transfer the back-up site of the Galileo Security Monitoring Centre from the United Kingdom to Spain.

The Galileo Security Monitoring Centre (GSMC) is a technical infrastructure which plays a key role in ensuring the security of the EU’s satellite navigation programme Galileo, including its Public Regulated Service (PRS). The GSMC has its main and operational location in France and its back-up site in the United Kingdom (Swanwick). As a consequence of the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the EU, the GSMC’s back-up site needs to be relocated from the United Kingdom to one of the 27 EU Member States.

On 18 January 2018, representatives of 27 Member States in the European Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) Programmes Committee voted in favour of the Commission proposal to relocate the back-up site to Spain.

With this formal decision, the Commission has launched the process for the transfer of the back-up site from the UK to Spain and the new site will become operational in the coming months.

Galileo is a key component of the Commission’s Space Strategy, which focuses on fostering new services, creating business opportunities, promoting Europe’s leadership in space and maintaining Europe’s strategic autonomy. The high-precision global satellite navigation system already supports emergency operations, provides more accurate navigation services, offers better time synchronisation for critical infrastructures and ensures secure services for public authorities.

The Galileo Public Regulated Service (PRS) is an encrypted navigation service for government-authorised users, such as civil protection services, customs officers and the police. This system is particularly robust and fully encrypted to provide service continuity for government users during emergencies or crisis situations.

A growing number of companies and innovative start-ups are using Galileo data and enabling their devices, including the newest versions of smartphones.

Once the constellation is completed, it will improve in-car navigation and mobile phone signals, help road and rail transport become safer and act as a catalyst for R&D and high-tech job creation around Europe.