Europe reluctantly chooses SpaceX to launch its GPS satellites

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According to a report, SpaceX has reached an agreement in coordination with the European Space Agency to launch four Galileo satellites next year Wall Street Journal Report. Two launches of Elon Musk’s Falcon 9 rockets will add to the 28 satellites currently orbiting the Earth in Europe’s global navigation system.

The deal still needs final approval from the European Union’s executive branch, which is expected to happen before the end of 2025, a European Commission spokesman said WSJ They are “taking all necessary steps to ensure that the Galileo constellation continues to provide excellent service in the months and years to come.”

The Falcon 9 rockets carrying Galileo satellites will launch from the United States, according to Javier Benedicto, navigation director for the European Space Agency. The European Commission is not eager to rely on a US company to deliver critical infrastructure into space, but rather on the war in Russia and the delays Europe’s Ariane rocket program have left the continent with no other options, officials say.

The European Galileo system competes with the USA’s Global Position System, China’s Beidou and Russia’s GLONASS. This is the first time in 15 years that Galileo satellites will be launched outside an EU territory. SpaceX CEO Musk has never before been hired to launch European satellites with classified equipment. The WSJ says officials in the US and EU are negotiating an agreement to protect this classified equipment used for European military communications.

SpaceX did not immediately respond to Gizmodo’s request for comment, while the European Commission responded with similar remarks WSJ.

The European Commission recently clashed with Musk over his moderation of content on X, accusing the billionaire of allowing it to happen Misinformation blossom. Just last week, insider reported that Musk was thinking about it Drag X completely removed from Europe in response to the new regulations adopted by the Commission.

SpaceX’s last collaboration with the European Space Agency was the launch of the Euclid Telescope in July. The six-year mission to explore the dark universe was recently launched has found its guiding stars again after a bumpy start that was anything but smooth.

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