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GSA Selects Orolia for Galileo Resilient Time and Frequency Server Initiative

Orolia announced that its team has been awarded an up to €1.7 million grant by the European Global Satellite Navigation Systems Agency (GSA) to develop a resilient time and frequency server to protect critical Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS)-reliant systems.

The Galileo Authenticated Robust Timing System (GEARS) project will deliver accurate and highly robust Galileo-based time and frequency data for critical infrastructure.

Critical infrastructure such as telecommunications, broadcast, data centers, transportation, energy generation/distribution, and finance rely on GNSS signals, and detailed studies have documented their vulnerability to threats from signal jamming or spoofing. 

The GEARS program will fund the development of a timing system to validate GNSS signals and protect the Galileo system from GNSS threats, providing accurate and robust time in GNSS challenged environments. It will also provide a backup signal and timing reference if Galileo is unavailable. 

The time server will leverage the new Galileo navigation data authentication signal to make it resilient to spoofing and utilize Orolia’s portfolio of interference detection and mitigation capabilities to increase resistance to jamming. The GEARS initiative will also develop a new standard for GNSS timing system protection by defining minimum testing criteria to qualify robustness against threats. 

“Once adopted, this new standard will help ensure that Galileo’s GNSS timing and synchronization services are resilient to intentional and unintentional interference, or denial of service, for all critical infrastructure operations,” said Thierry Delhomme, EMEA General Manager, Orolia. “Orolia is honored to support Resilient PNT initiatives for GSA and Galileo.”

“We have only scratched the surface of the potential of Galileo for Timing and Synchronization solutions,” said Carlo des Dorides, Executive Director of the European GNSS Agency. “Galileo has a key role  to play in the management of critical infrastructure, and by developing a Galileo-based timing receiver for this infrastructure we are enabling a wealth of solutions to secure the provision of critical applications to all citizens in important markets such as Telecommunication, Energy and Finance, once again responding to user needs with space technologies. I look forward to the first prototype,” added des Dorides.

This two-year grant agreement with GSA will be coordinated by Orolia, collaborating with four European partners: FDC (France), NLR (Netherlands Aerospace Center, Netherlands), NLS – FGI (National Land Survey of Finland – Finnish Geospatial Research Institute, Finland) and NavCert (Germany). The prototype to be developed and validated will embed relevant new technologies and innovations to ensure maximum security and robustness for Galileo’s timing receivers by 2021.

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