UK startup Lacuna Space has teamed up with Omnispace to launch a global IoT service using the LoRaWAN protocol later this year.
The collaboration will enable the commercial launch of a global, open standards-based IoT network using LoRaWAN direct from a node on the ground to a satellite. This will use the LR-FHSS protocol on Omnispace satellites in Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) using licensed, 2GHz S-band spectrum. Integrating Omnispace and Lacuna infrastructure will allow devices to connect seamlessly between existing terrestrial networks and previously un-connected regions around the globe.
“Omnispace have MEO satellites have larger antenna and higher gain, and we have done extensive testing on this,” said Jonathan Pearce, chief commercial officer of Lacuna Space.
Lacuna also has five of its own satellites in low earth orbit (LEO) to provide daily LoRaWaN connections to IoT sensors on the ground, and plans to have 30 satellites offering an hourly service says Pearce. The company uses a range of satellite technology suppliers, including Oxford Space Systems and Parametric in Switzerland, and is also a technology supplier to other satellite operators as well as OmniSpace.
“This agreement with Omnispace accelerates getting our technology to market and enables us to start delivering our IoT services around the globe,” said Rob Spurrett, CEO of Lacuna. “Our customers will be able to access Lacuna’s IoT service directly from inexpensive, battery-powered LoRa devices to extend connectivity to even the most remote areas of the world.”
The joint Omnispace and Lacuna effort will begin serving customers and distribution partners in Q3 2022, powering asset tracking, fleet management and data collection across industries globally. The two companies will leverage the LoRaWAN standard that is capable of bridging terrestrial networks with worldwide satellite coverage to offer low power ubiquitous connectivity.
The initial sensors are smaller than the palm of a hand and can connect over satellite for several years off a single battery charge.
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