Gilat Satellite Networks Ltd. has announced its key role in the first-ever demonstration of an in-flight aircraft communicating at broadband speeds with a low earth orbit (LEO) satellite system. This industry milestone was achieved using Global Eagle’s “Albatross One” test aircraft with Gilat’s aero modem and Telesat’s Phase 1 LEO satellite, launched earlier this year. The testing included a successful demonstration of seamless connectivity and switchover between Telesat’s geostationary orbit (GEO) and LEO satellites.
“Telesat is pleased to be collaborating with innovative companies like Gilat and Global Eagle who recognize the potential of Telesat’s LEO system to transform the in-flight broadband experience for millions of passengers worldwide,” said Erwin Hudson, Vice President, Telesat LEO. “This flight on Global Eagle’s Albatross aircraft test-bed with Gilat’s aero modem confirms that Telesat’s state-of-the-art LEO architecture satisfies Global Eagle’s requirements for seamless connectivity and terrestrial-like broadband performance for multiple applications, including the capability to switch between LEO and GEO constellations.”
“Global Eagle is confident that Telesat’s planned LEO constellation will fundamentally improve the passenger experience for inflight broadband with industry-leading latency, throughput and global coverage,” said Global Eagle Executive VP Per Noren. “We chose to collaborate with Gilat on LEO baseband technology due to their proven multi-application platform and clear LEO roadmap.”
“Gilat and Global Eagle’s ongoing collaboration with Telesat has brought this outstanding achievement to market confirming the broadband vision of next generation IFC,” said Ron Levin VP Mobility and Global Accounts at Gilat. “Gilat’s solution has now proved its technological advantage of supporting not only multiple applications, satellites, bands and beams, but also a world first transition between satellites in multiple orbits.”
Global Eagle is a leading provider of satellite-based broadband connectivity, television, and entertainment services, content and data analytics to aviation, maritime, enterprise, and government markets. Global Eagle offers a fully integrated portfolio of rich media content and high-speed connectivity solutions for airlines, private jets, cruise lines, commercial ships, super-yachts, ferries, enterprise, government and military installations worldwide with proprietary performance-enhancing technologies and exclusive access to premium media.