back to article Galileo pork punchup takes unexpected twist

Yesterday it appeared that the troubled Euro-collaborative sat nav project Galileo had finally achieved a way forward - but then reports of fresh disagreements surfaced. The plan at the start of this year was for Galileo to be a public-private partnership, with business interests kicking in a substantial proportion of the …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    They've already named the baby

    Well if they're arguing over 'where' not 'if' then the baby is named and little baby Galileo already has proud parents fighting over him.

  2. amanfromMars Silver badge

    B.rats. .......

    Christ, they're worse than spoilt kids in a sweet shop. There's pork for all..... and vegetables ..... and gravy ....... and all with the sweet trolley to follow.

    With everyone bickering to Lead/not be left behind, is there no leadership being displayed.

    Par for the course in Public Service, is it?

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Better investment than Northern Rock

    With NR sucking up £2Bn of taxpayers money a week and currently owing us in excess of £25Bn, a paltry 2.4Bn to fund Galileo and free ourselves from the US military's GPS whims sound like a good investment!

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Better investment than Northern Rock

    And it's just €2.4 bn, that's what, £1.5 bn? Peanuts, I say feed the monkeys! Plus the resolution will be higher, so hopefully your galileo sat-nav would know which lane you're in on those huge roundabouts that are impossible to navigate and advise you accordingly.

  5. Risky
    Thumb Down

    the baby?

    Well it's obvious who the parent is as it's the EU taxpayer that has been royally screwed.

  6. TeeCee Gold badge
    Gates Halo

    @Northern Rock Anon Cow.

    You reckon that 2.4Bn is a fair price to pay for a service we currently get for free, only owned by a different big-government entity with delusions of grandeur that we don't trust?

    Boy, do I have some investment opportunities for you!

    One thing you are right about though, it's a better investment than NR. But, since I regard that one as being not entirely dissimilar to piling 2Bn in cash on the floor each week and setting fire to it, I don't think that's a selling point.

    (Piccy of Bill Gates looking chuffed, 'cos he knows a thing or two about taking billions off mugs).

  7. Bob Gulien

    It will end like this...

    There will be 27 fully staffed groundstations, one in every country of the EC, and fully paid by the EC, but only one will be working. Which one is Top Secret, because if it ever comes out, 26 national prides will be hurt.

  8. amanfromMars Silver badge

    IT's not what you got what's important, it's how you can use IT.

    "You reckon that 2.4Bn is a fair price to pay for a service we currently get for free, only owned by a different big-government entity with delusions of grandeur that we don't trust?"


    We can't have GPS suffering delusions all on their own. What on earth do you think special relationships are for, if not to beam down specialist help into the nests of vipers.

    They do say that nothing is ever free, which makes one wonder what it must be really costing us whenever they wheel that hoary old chestnut out to counter another player entering the game.

    Psst..... has anyone any idea how long it takes to run off 2.4Bn at the printing works for spending elsewhere? Any longer than the time to read this post, do you think?

  9. Anonymous Coward

    Its all about road pricing, silly

    Galileo signals will be much stronger than GPS allowing for more accurate road pricing and, in time, speed control, throughout the EU. Once the UK govt got cold feet about RP (thanks to the petition) it lost interest.

  10. Mark

    GPS isn't free

    We get whatever the US (who own it) will let us have. If the US have financial difficulties, they could stop GPS updates. The US is mostly mid lattitudes and North, so artic circle coverage is bad and the southern hemisphere is worse.

    Also, we only get the resolution and accuracy that the US will let us have.

    Given we've given a £25Bn (~€40Bn) loan to NR merely because a run on a single, relatively small bank is a bad idea, ponying up £1.4Bn for Gallileo isn't any worse.

  11. Paul Cooper


    Southern Hemisphere coverage is exactly the same as Northern hemisphere coverage; the satellites go in circles!

    I don't know where people get the idea that Arctic (or Antarctic) cover is bad from either; it is certainly fine in the bit of Antarctica I work on! And we use it for post-processed survey positions with sub-centimetre accuracy. Of ocurse, you are more likely to hit a bad patch because of ionospheric disturbances, but that's physics and to do with the delays in the signal, not signal strength.

  12. Beachhutman

    Elephant pies, the white variety

    Once the new Lisbon constitutional ooops "reform" Treaty, on which Gordon Brown is so very keen, has been ratified there will be no way to stop the EU funding Galileo even if it has to rob all the other budgets and shove it through on majority voting. UK is stuffed on this, it knows there is no point in Galileo, but can't stop picking up the bills. This is because under Brown's beloved constitutional oops "reform" treaty, the EU will at be legally authorised to run its own space policy, instead of using the ESA. This white elephant, redundant before it is launched, will be an immensely expensive, and inevitably mis-managed, EU funding disaster, and the UK will be far and away the biggest payer, as we always seem to be with the EU.

  13. Eileen Bach

    @ anonymous Coward

    Yes. It could also allow for extra train and air movements too and it's not that expensive compared to the 'value' of digital cartography company shareholders/aquisitions. We must have secondary & independent european sourced navigation with or without politics I think. It's just got to happen.

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