Posted on: 07 March 2013 by Mark Howells
Inmarsat has entered into an agreement with Kymeta, a specialist that designs and commercialises innovative metamaterials-based antennas for satellite communications, to develop a new satellite antenna which will enable business jets to access high-speed broadband connectivity globally.
Broadband connectivity will be powered by Inmarsat’s Global Xpress (GX) service. The new Kymeta Aero Antenna will only be available to GX users and will be developed as a light-weight, flat-panel device, with the aim to deliver a new level of broadband speeds, data rates and bandwidth for business jet customers, which will be akin to the service they receive at home or in the office.
"Over the coming 10 years, some 10,000 new business jets are forecast to enter service. In this changing world, where enhancing the productivity and effectiveness of the business executive is paramount, the need to offer constant connectivity is non-negotiable,” explained Leo Mondale, Managing Director of Inmarsat Global Xpress. “It is this absolute requirement to keep executives connected, wherever they are, that is driving demand for solutions which support smaller aircraft."
"We are excited to reach this milestone and engage with Inmarsat to bring next-generation broadband services into the global business aviation market," said Vern Fotheringham, CEO of Kymeta.
"Honeywell prides itself on advanced technology and innovation and is pleased to support this research endeavour,” added Jack Jacobs, vice president of marketing and product management at Honeywell.
The aim of the development of Kymeta’s GX-capable antenna is to be significantly lighter and smaller than previous satellite antennas, so that it can be fitted to much smaller aircraft. The antenna will electronically steer the antenna beam to Inmarsat’s GX satellites without requiring power-consuming phase shifters or mechanically moving parts.