European Space Agency, Inmarsat To Collaborate on Satellite Design
The European Space Agency and London-based mobile satellite operator Inmarsat have signed a system engineering agreement that will extend the capabilities of Inmarsat’s new broadband global area network System (BGAN) to be offered by the Inmarsat I-4 satellite constellation.
Following the launch of the first of the I-4 satellites in 2004, BGAN is expected to become operational for land services in 2005. BGAN is designed to meet the demand from business and private users for high-speed Internet access and multimedia connectivity. Applications will include Internet and intranet access, video on demand, web TV, videoconferencing, fax, email and LAN access at speeds of up to 432 Kbps to notebook-sized terminals almost anywhere in the world. The BGAN extension project with ESA will establish the specification and definition for directional, as well as omni-directional platforms and services for maritime, aeronautical and land mobile applications.