Gilat Satellite Networks Ltd., a worldwide leader in satellite networking technology, solutions and services, announced today that Gilat’s first-to-flight Electronically Steered Antenna (ESA) terminal achieved yet another industry-first with in-flight connectivity over NGSO, that well-positions Gilat to win the vast opportunities in the ESA market. The demonstration showed high performance and instantaneous Ka-band switchovers between and operating on Telesat’s Phase 1 LEO satellite and its Anik-F3 GEO satellite, onboard Honeywell’s Boeing 757 commercial test aircraft, across several flight tests.
Gilat’s high throughput and small form factor ESA operated continuously over GEO then instantaneously switched connectivity to operate on LEO when it came into view, and back to GEO after operating on LEO. The ESA terminal demonstrated high performance, with broadband throughput of up to 58 Mbit/sec on both FWD and RTN, round trip delay as low as 18msec and robust operation at low elevation angles of down to 20 degrees.
Gilat’s ESA is a no moving parts, full electronic beam steering flat panel antenna with an extremely low profile. Gilat’s innovative design combines the benefits of ESA with the advantages of Ka-band, as highlighted by the performance achieved in this testing. The ESA terminal serves both GEO and NGSO constellations and as such opens the market to low latency real-time applications.
Gilat’s multi-orbit ESA switchover capabilities will enable airlines to future-proof their connectivity decisions,” said Michel Forest, Director of Systems Engineering for the LEO Program at Telesat. “Airlines will be able to access high-performing Ka-band connectivity today, and easily incorporate LEO low-latency connectivity without replacing terminals. Our ongoing development efforts with our valued partner Gilat will ensure airlines have flexibility and ability to meet their inflight data requirements of the future.”
“Gilat’s innovative ESA terminal opens up great opportunities in the commercial and business aviation markets with a winning proposition that addresses the two major ESA industry growth dynamics: mobility, with emphasis on in-flight connectivity, and the upcoming NGSO constellations,” said Roni Stoleru, Vice President Antenna Products & Strategy at Gilat. “We are appreciative of the collaboration with our long-standing partners, Honeywell and Telesat and look forward to continued cooperation.”
Gilat’s ESA terminal will be displayed at Satellite 2020 in Washington DC, booth #1017.