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First multi-orbit satellite receiver in field tests

First multi-orbit satellite receiver in field tests

Technology News |
By Nick Flaherty



UK start up Isotropic Systems has shown the first-ever simultaneous multi-orbit antenna in field tests with European satellite operator SES.

The UK-built multi-link antenna underwent a series of field tests at SES’s Manassas, Virginia teleport. The terminal established multiple simultaneous, full-performance link connections with SES satellites, linking to a geostationary (GEO) satellite while simultaneously connected with an O3b satellite in medium earth orbit (MEO).

Current ground antennas only connect to a single network at a time, and the Isotropic antenna design can connect to two different networks on two different frequencies at the same time.

The antenna will allow NATO and other international forces to combine military and secure commercial satellites around the world, and allow aircraft systems to connect to the optimal satellites for navigation and ground communications, while passengers in the cabin can connect to entirely separate satellites in different orbits for in-flight broadband.

A key part of the proposition is the technology comes entirely from Europe and the company has been working with UK broadband satellite constellation provider OneWeb.

At sea, ships can be tracked across the oceans, accelerating digital transformation for the shipping industry and super-fast internet will transform the experience for cruise ship passengers.

“We have removed the major bottleneck holding back the expansion of the satellite sector for both commercial and defence communications. Users can finally connect to as many satellites as they want, when they want, wherever they want and that’s a game-changer for enterprise, aero, maritime, government and defense,” said John Finney, founder and CEO of Isotropic Systems. “This test proves space is now open, as we mesh networks together in a way that is unparalleled, without compromise. We have delivered on our vision to combine the full performance of multiple antennas into one multi-link, solid state, software defined terminal without any restrictions.”

“The success of these multi-orbit antenna trials opens the door to a new level of multi-orbit service delivery, as we integrate our geostationary satellites with our second-generation low-latency, high-throughput O3b mPOWER system to provide seamless services for our customers,” said Steve Collar, CEO of SES. “Isotropic’s unique architecture enables our customers to be connected to multiple simultaneous beams from both GEO and MEO satellites, enabling us to deliver industry-defining performance and orbital resilience services. It is a game changer for resilient, secure, global networks built on SES’s state-of-the-art fleet.”

“This is a significant breakthrough that will put UK technology developed by Isotropic Systems at the heart of meeting the unprecedented demand for global connectivity. It’s a great example of the innovation found within the UK’s growing space sector and has been made possible by our leading investments in telecommunications research through the European Space Agency,” said Mike Rudd, Head of Telecommunications Strategy at the UK Space Agency.

www.isotropicsystems.com

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