Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Galileo pathfinder GIOVE-A achieves five years in orbit

ESA's GIOVE-A satellite - the first prototype of Europe's Galileo satellite navigation system - is still working well after five long years in space. It was launched on 28 December 2005 from Kazakhstan.
On 27 April 2008 GIOVE-B joined older brother, equipped with an ultra-precise passive hydrogen maser design.
"Both satellites had a design lifetime of 27 months each", said Valter Alpe, managing GIOVE activities for ESA. "It is a pleasent surprise, therefore, to have GIOVE-A still fully operational after 60 months in orbit. GIOVE-B, meanwhile, is showing no sign of problems after 33 months in space."

GIOVE-A, Image credit: ESA