Spirent Delivers Critical Test Capabilities for Galileo EU Defence (GEODE) Programme

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Spirent delivers critical test capabilities for Galileo EU Defence programme hero

As the ambitious EU defence project gets underway, Spirent simulators will play a key role in developing Galileo PRS user equipment for military use.

Work on the Galileo EU Defence (GEODE) programme has begun, with Spirent simulators set to play a key role in testing positioning, navigation and timing (PNT) user equipment designed for military use with Galileo Public Regulated Service (PRS) encrypted signals.

A consortium of 30 organisations from 14 European Union member states met in February to start work on GEODE, in what consortium leader FDC describes as “one of the most ambitious Defence cooperation projects launched under the umbrella of the European Defence Industrial Development Programme (EDIDP)”.

The project is planned to run until 2026 and has been further described by FDC as “the biggest Galileo application development project ever launched”. Equipment developed under the GEODE programme is intended for use by defence organisations in all EU member states, and for export to countries that have a Galileo PRS security agreement with the EU.

In all, consortium members will deliver:

  • 7 Galileo PRS Security Modules

  • 9 Galileo PRS receivers (including two server-based variants)

  • 4 GPS/Galileo PRS compatible anti-jamming Controlled Radiation Pattern Antennas (CRPA)

  • A common and standardised test environment

  • A Galileo PRS infrastructure to ensure availability of security assets for operational testing

  • A Galileo PRS solution for spacecraft

Galileo PRS: A secure, encrypted GNSS signal independent of GPS

The encrypted Galileo PRS signal is one of four services offered by the Galileo satellite system. It provides secure, continuous and robust PNT services for authorised military and public sector users both in the European Union and third countries with necessary security agreements.

Galileo PRS signals are designed to be highly resistant to jamming, spoofing and other types of disruption – enabling armed forces, emergency services and operators of critical national infrastructure to continue operating in adverse conditions. Galileo PRS is interoperable with GPS, but is also designed to provide continuity of secure PNT in the event of loss of access to GPS signals.

Spirent simulators will play a key role through our partnership with Fraunhofer IIS

Testing and certification of equipment developed under the GEODE programme will require high-fidelity lab simulation of Galileo PRS signals.

Simulation is vital because it allows equipment to be tested in highly controllable and repeatable scenarios – essential for understanding the impact of design changes or changes in the signal environment on the performance of the receiver or antenna system.

As the market leader in simulating encrypted GNSS signals, Spirent simulators have been chosen by consortium member Fraunhofer IIS and its partners Airbus Defence and Space, Siemens and Diehl Defence to provide a robust foundation for their GEODE-related Galileo PRS testing.

Fraunhofer IIS is a leader in Galileo PRS receiver development and, since 2018, has been Spirent’s partner for Galileo PRS signal simulation through prs[ware]. As a leading member of the GEODE consortium, Fraunhofer IIS will contribute the following:

  • European standardisation of navigation solutions for Galileo PRS

  • Development and testing of a Galileo PRS application specific ASIC

  • Development and testing of a Galileo PRS application module for timing and synchronisation applications

  • Support for design of a CRPA for timing and synchronisation applications

  • Development and demonstration of server-based Galileo PRS technologies on a remotely piloted aircraft system (RPAS)

  • Development of a Galileo PRS infrastructure for operational testing of developed receivers

Spirent simulators are ready to simulate Galileo PRS and other encrypted signals

Spirent is ideally placed to provide simulators and software for GEODE development projects. We have a 30+ year track record of working closely with space agencies, defence organisations and prime contractors to test GNSS systems and the equipment that depends on them. Through offices in France and Germany and our dedicated team of EU employees Spirent continues to be the trusted partner of developers working in all areas of the Galileo programme.

Today, our powerful GSS9000 Series simulators represent the state of the art in multi-frequency, multi-constellation GNSS testing. We continue to innovate ahead of the market, introducing a raft of new GSS9000 features this year to meet the evolving test requirements of mission-critical PNT systems for the defence and space sectors.

Talk to Spirent about your Galileo and Galileo PRS test requirements

We are happy to discuss any aspect of using Spirent equipment to test receivers, antennas and PNT systems for use with Galileo, Galileo PRS or any other GNSS signals. To learn more about how Spirent can help, please get in touch.




Jan Ackermann

Director of Product Line Management

Jan Ackermann is the Director of Product Line Management at Spirent Communications Position, Navigation and Timing Business Unit.  Jan holds a master’s degree in engineering having studied both in the US and Germany. He has worked within the global Automotive, Government and Wireless Technology Markets.