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Inmarsat Demonstrates Seamless Global Xpress Connectivity

By Kendall Russell | August 2, 2017
Inmarsat's Gulfstream 4 aircraft used for its "Around the World" test flight. Photo: Inmarsat.

Inmarsat’s Gulfstream 4 aircraft used for its “Around the World” test flight. Photo: Inmarsat.

Inmarsat has successfully completed its Global Xpress “Around the World” test flight. The exercise, conducted on a Gulfstream 4 aircraft between June 5 and June 11, covered more than 25,000 miles and demonstrated Global Xpress’ ability to deliver seamless, worldwide coverage across multiple spot beams and satellites. The flight route spanned the Northern and Southern Hemispheres, beginning in the United States with stops in the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, Thailand, Australia and Fiji.

Inmarsat configured a Global Xpress subscription-based data plan for the Honeywell aero Tail Mount Antenna (TMA), with a committed information rate of 4Mbps forward and 1Mbps return but capable of 15Mbps or more. The company reported uniform coverage and service delivered to the aircraft as it moved across 28 beams with handovers that went unnoticed by users, as well as three satellite-to-satellite handovers.

The terminal’s global plan enabled access to the Global Xpress network without the need to pre-coordinate and receive satellite-specific option files, the company stated. During the flight, Global Xpress supported voice, data and streaming applications to include video teleconferencing, high-speed internet access and file transfer, Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) as well as phone calls, and fully delivered or exceeded the committed information rate.

According to Inmarsat, with four high-capacity satellites linked as one network, Global Xpress’ spot beam architecture ensures uniform distribution of capacity, allowing for consistent, uninterrupted connectivity no matter where the user is operating. Steerable antennas on each Global Xpress satellite enable flexible augmentation of network capacity, as driven by user demand.