Antenna Builder Makes Push for Constellation Market
An excerpt from a recent SpaceNews article, “Antenna builder ThinKom makes push for constellation market,”:
ThinKom’s recent collaborations with satellite operators Telesat and SES have the antenna builder jockeying to compete with Viasat, Isotropic Systems and others in the race to build affordable high-tech antennas that can link with satellite constellations in non-geosynchronous orbits.
Hawthorne, California-based ThinKom tested a phased array antenna with SES in August, practicing links with O3b satellites in medium Earth orbit as they rose over the horizon and then tracking them for 30 minutes each. Last month, ThinKom and Telesat announced plans to test an antenna with a Telesat prototype satellite in low Earth orbit (LEO) and to collaborate on business-grade terminals for Telesat’s planned 120-satellite LEO constellation.
Satellite operators and constellation ventures that want to offer broadband from space are increasingly focused on low-cost, flat-panel antennas that can track satellites in different orbits and support more throughput for higher data speeds than traditional dish antennas. The absence of such flat-panel antennas, as constellations start launching and high-throughput geostationary satellites grow in number, has satellite operators “all pretty much desperate to see somebody bring a solution to market,” according to Chris Quilty, president of Quilty Analytics.
Read the full article here.