Successful Navigation Test Campaign for recovered Galileo satellite FOC-FM1

The European Space Agency (ESA) has recovered one of two satellites (Galileo-FOC FM1) that were put into the wrong orbit when launched on 22 August 2014.

The European Commission will take a decision shortly on whether to employ them for the Galileo satellite navigation system as originally planned.

The two satellites, the fifth and sixth of the Galileo series, were directed into a prolonged orbit - up to 25,900 km above the Earth and back down to 13,713 km - rather than completing the expected circular trajectory.

Since then, eleven maneuvers were carried out over the course of seventeen days in order to gradually bring the fifth satellite, Galileo-FOC FM1, upwards at the lowest point of its orbit. As a result, FOC-FM1 has ascent more than 3,500 kilometers, executing a more circular path.

Galileo test user receivers, positioned at various locations in Europe recorded the FOC-FM1 satellite's navigation signal-in-space transmitting in the three Galileo frequency bands (E5/E6/L1).

Experts said the quality of the signal is satisfactory and they are currently planning recovery maneuvers for the sixth satellite in order to take it into the same orbital plane.