The Galileo programme is Europe's initiative for a state-of-the-art global satellite navigation system, providing a highly accurate global positioning service under civilian control. The fully deployed system will consist of 30 satellites and the associated ground infrastructure.
The first two operational satellites were launched on 21 October 2011. The launch of Galileo's third and fourth satellites from Europe's spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana, took place on the 12 October 2012.
Galileo will offer three services, the Open Service (free of charge), the Public Regulated Service (PRS), and the Search-and-Rescue Service, as of 2014. Further services to follow later will include a Commercial Service and a Safety-of-Life Service for higher data throughput rate and higher accuracy authenticated data.
Galileo will be interoperable with GPS and GLONASS, the two other global satellite navigation systems managed by the US and Russia, respectively.