01 July 2014: The first Inmarsat-5 satellite has entered commercial service, with US Government customers becoming the first users of Inmarsat Global Xpress.
The high-speed broadband service is now providing coverage in the Indian Ocean region following the successful completion of satellite and end-user tests.
“The unique combination of global coverage and military satellite communications (MILSATCOM) interoperability makes Global Xpress an ideal complementary solution for government users,” said Peter Hadinger, President of Inmarsat’s US Government Business Unit.
“Alongside their available MILSATCOM resources, governments now have the ability to efficiently extend wideband coverage, increase their capacity and enhance resiliency without investment in additional satellites.
“We’re proud that Global Xpress has been selected to meet some of the United States Government’s most critical needs and pleased to already have them online and operational.”
Since its launch last December, the first GX satellite and its supporting ground network and terminal infrastructure have been undergoing extensive tests. Testing of GX commercial capabilities included evaluations with US Government customers who assessed a range of land and aeronautical terminals via a complex series of demonstrations, resulting in breakthrough performance for data rates and link efficiencies.
Steve Gizinski, Inmarsat’s US Government Business Unit’s Vice President of Special Programs, who led the US Government customer test programme, said: “GX performance was incredible – meeting, and usually well exceeding, all threshold and objective criteria.
“We thank our customers, their support contractors, a host of equipment vendors and the highly professional team across all of Inmarsat for making these tests a success.”
Firms participating represent a ‘who’s who’ of the MILSATCOM community, including ASC, Boeing, DRS, Ultra Gigasat, Gilat, Honeywell Aerospace, Hughes, Inmarsat Government, iDirect Government Technologies, L-3 GCS, L-3 Datron, Micro-Ant, Newtec, Tampa Microwave, TECOM Industries, Thales, ThinKom, and ViaSat.
Full global operation for Global Xpress is expected to take place in the first half of 2015 with Inmarsat and its partners set to introduce a range of GX products and services spanning maritime, enterprise, energy, aviation and government markets worldwide.
Global Xpress: www.inmarsat.com