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Issue 9: Water Applications

Galileo in Maritime Applications

Stig Erik Christiansen, John Klepsvik, Michael Fairbanks, Alan Grant, Nick Ward, and Marko Jandrisits

Download the full paper in PDF (552 KB)


The past decade has seen the continued growth of GPS and its many different applications. The European Union and the European Space Agency has announced the development of the European Global Navigation Satellite System - Galileo. Clearly acceptance of additional satellite systems into markets that successfully use GPS will require identification of those key areas where Galileo is capable of providing added-value, either standalone or more likely as a component of an overall integrated suite of navigation systems. These key areas are often termed the key differentiators for Galileo.

This paper introduces three projects; GALEWAT, MARGAL and GEM. The GALEWAT project is fully funded by the European Space Agency (ESA), while MARGAL is 50% co-funded and GEM fully funded by the European Union (EU) through the Sixth Framework Research and Development Programme which is being administered on behalf of the EU by the Galileo Joint Undertaking (GJU). The overall aim of all three projects is to raise awareness of Galileo. GALEWAT is a project running since 05/2003 with the focus of demonstration the feasibility of the introduction of EGNOS in the upcoming River Information Services (RIS). The MARGAL project focuses on the maritime use of Galileo, whereas GEM is concerned with the standardization of Galileo as part of the World Wide Radio-Navigation Service (WWRNS) as well as performance requirements and testing standards for Galileo receivers; both projects are running over a two-year period, commencing from early 2004. This paper aims to provide an introduction to, and an overview of these projects, informing the reader where they may benefit from the introduction of Galileo.

The paper starts by reviewing the perceived benefits of Galileo and demonstrates, through the use of a third party software model, where Galileo will benefit the mariner. The GALEWAT project has analysed the technical feasibility and performance of the introduction of EGNOS in upcoming River Information Services, while the aim of MARGAL is twofold: the demonstration of an end-to-end value added navigation services in the inland waterway domain as well as for port approach and harbour navigation in the maritime domain. For MARGAL, this paper reports on the development of a measurement program to identify where Galileo has the potential to benefit the mariner along with the development of the MARGAL system for harmonised navigation. Finally this paper also details work on the lengthy standardisation procedure that is being undertaken as part of the GEM project.


  • Reprinted with permission from The Institute of Navigation ( and The Proceedings of the 18th International Technical Meeting of the Satellite Division of The Institute of Navigation, (pp. 779-787). Fairfax, VA: The Institute of Navigation.


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