Last Galileo Satellite Leaves ESA Test Centre


The last of 22 Galileo satellites has departed the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Test Centre in the Netherlands. This concludes the single longest and largest scale test campaign in the establishment’s history, ESA said.

Cocooned in a protective container for its journey — equipped with air conditioning, temperature control and shock absorbers — the final Galileo satellite left the establishment by lorry on Aug. 24.

ESA’s Test Centre at ESTEC in Noordwijk, the Netherlands, houses a collection of test equipment to simulate all aspects of spaceflight. It is operated for ESA by private company European Test Services (ETS) B.V.

With a steady stream of satellites coming off the production line, the challenge for the combined ETS and OHB team overseeing Galileo testing was to put them through all necessary tests on a rapid and efficient basis, while also keeping the Test Centre accessible to other European missions requiring its unique services.

Read more in GPS World article.