Thales Alenia Space to supply Korea Augmentation Satellite System to KARI


The Thales Alenia Space joint venture has entered a contract with the South Korean space agency Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI) to supplying the Korea Augmentation Satellite System (KASS).

The project also received support from the European Commission, the GSA (European GNSS Agency), the European Space Agency, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and CNES.

“This contract will contribute to reinforce the trust between Korea Aerospace Research Institute and Thales Alenia Space and to the successful KASS programme."

Thales Alenia Space president and chief executive officer Jean Loïc Galle said: “Our first export success with this sophisticated and powerful navigation system is the upshot of Thales Alenia Space’s involvement with Europe’s sat-nav projects since the outset, in 1996.

“We are drawing on 20 years of experience to help the Korean space agency, and allow government bodies in the country to develop applications that will improve its people’s comfort and safety for all types of transportation.”

KARI will receive KASS System on behalf of the South Korean Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport (MOLIT).

The system relies on the European Geostationary Navigation Overlay System (EGNOS), which was developed by Thales Alenia Space as prime contractor for the European Commission, and the European Space Agency (ESA) as contracting authority.

The EGNOS system has been operational in Europe since 2009 for safety of life (SoL) services.

KASS programme office director Gi Wook Nam said: “This contract will contribute to reinforce the trust between Korea Aerospace Research Institute and Thales Alenia Space and to the successful KASS programme.

“In celebration of 130th anniversary of diplomatic relationship between France and the Republic of Korea, the national relationship between the two countries will be undoubtedly strengthened by co-developing the KASS.”

KASS will improve the positioning performance provided by the current satellite navigation system GPS, and with evolution for the future Glonass and Galileo systems.

South Korea will initially use KASS to offer aeronautical applications, including SoL services, so that it can be used during different flight phases, especially landings. It will eventually extend these services to other applications, including maritime, road and rail.