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OmniAccess Begins Testing Telesat’s First LEO Satellite

By | February 1, 2018
      Rendition of Telesat's Phase 1 LEO satellite in orbit. Photo: SSTL.

      Rendition of Telesat’s Phase 1 LEO satellite in orbit. Photo: SSTL.

      Telesat announced it will cooperate with OmniAccess to conduct live, over-the-air trials on the operator’s new Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite system. After one failed launch on a Soyuz 2 in November, Telesat successfully launched its Phase 1 LEO satellite in January on a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PLSV). The spacecraft is now undergoing commissioning and orbit-raising.

      Telesat’s LEO constellation, once fully deployed, will deliver low latency, fiber-like broadband for commercial and government users. The initial constellation will consist of approximately 120 satellites launched by 2021 that will provide full global coverage.

      The company’s Phase 1 testing will demonstrate key features of Telesat’s LEO design and enable Telesat to match system performance with the projected requirements of customers like OmniAccess, in terms of both network operations and capacity needs. Telesat has installed ground infrastructure at its teleport in Allan Park, Ontario in Canada to support testing. According to the company, its customers in growing enterprise segments are eager to participate in trials during 2018.

      Telesat was the first satellite operator to provide bandwidth to OmniAccess. Recently, Marlink acquired OmniAcccess to improve its position in the maritime Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT) market.

      “Since 2010 Telesat satellite capacity has enabled OmniAccess to deliver a superior broadband experience to our superyacht and cruise ship customers,” said Bertrand Hartman, OmniAccess Chief Executive Officer (CEO). “But to keep pace with customer demands, we need fiber-like performance around the world — far more capacity with ultra low latency at lower costs. This led OmniAccess to undertake a careful review of both existing and planned satellite systems in Geosynchronous Earht Orbit (GEO), Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) and LEO. Based on this evaluation, OmniAccess believes that Telesat’s innovative LEO system design can provide an optimal broadband experience for our demanding customer segments.”

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