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The UK is investing millions to make its own satellite system

August 27, 2018

After Brexit, Britain could be cut off from the EU’s space technologies.

The news: According to the Telegraph, the UK’s Prime Minister Theresa May has ordered work to begin on a satellite network that would match the European Union’s Galileo project. Reportedly, 100 million pounds is being allocated to “map out” plans for the UK’s new system. An official government announcement is expected in the coming week.

Some background: Galileo, which works more precisely than previous services GPS services, became available for public use in 2016 and will be completed in 2020. The European Commission has said the UK’s use of and involvement in Galileo could be a threat to security.

Why it matters: Replicating a huge project like this takes an unbelievable amount of time and money, and is essentially a duplication of decades’ worth of work. Reuters reports that building a complete new system could cost 3 billion pounds.

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