Europe’s Galileo satellite network, approved by the FCC for US smartphones, has suffered a critical outage. The system has been down since Friday due to what officers at the European GNSS Agency (GSA) have described as a “technical incident associated with its ground infrastructure.” Meaning customers with newer smartphones that support Galileo can be relying on GPS, Russia’s Glonass, or the Chinese Beidou systems for navigation, as a substitute.
The GSA said that “experts are working to revive the situation as soon as possible. An Anomaly Review Board has been instantly erected to analyze the exact root cause and to implement restoration measures.” Sat-nav capabilities shall be unavailable till further discover, it added. Nevertheless, Galileo’s ability to select up distress messages for search and rescue is outwardly still working.
The outage won’t make users’ navigation chores any much less correct; nevertheless, it’s worrying that a comparatively new, technically sophisticated system can go down for so long. In line with the specialist sat-nav site Inside GNSS, the glitch occurred at the Exact Timing Facility in Italy, where all of the Galileo system clocks are calibrated and tested.
The EU developed Galileo to give it civilian and military options to the US GPS and Russia’s GLONASS. The GSA sent the first satellite in 2005 and now has 26 out of 30 operating. Service came online in 2016; nonetheless, the system continues to be in a pilot phase, which means it is not intended for use for mission-critical conditions. Hopefully, the EU can repair it and work out the bugs before it does go into complete operation.