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‘UK Galileo’ could offer encrypted service for civilian use

Image: OHB System AG, ESA

The UK’s space agency chief has said that a homegrown replacement for the European Union’s Galileo satellite system could offer encrypted positioning information to critical parts of the UK economy and justify its multibillion-pound cost.

Crucial elements of the UK economy, including financial institutions, transport and electricity networks, rely on unsecured data from satellite navigation systems run by the EU and the United States.

“Important capabilities depend on the open signal,” Graham Turnock, chief executive of the UK Space Agency, told Research Professional News. More secure data available from the US and EU systems are closed to civilian users.

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