Kymeta Corporation, headquartered in Redmond, Wash., claims to have shown how the flat-panel antenna will communicate with Kepler Communications’ satellite constellation meant for the high-speed data transmissions even in the coldest of environments. It’s the newest partnership between Kymeta, whose founders include Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, as well as Kepler, a Canadian space company that graduated from the Techstars Seattle incubator course in 2016.
Kepler is one of the organizations launching satellites into the low Earth orbit (LEO), including SpaceX as well as OneWeb, and also Amazon’s Project Kuiper constellation, which has yet to fly. Those other industries are mainly centered on customer and company internet connectivity. On the other hand, Kepler is focused on satellite-centered, high-capacity networking for the Internet of Things-enabled smart devices. The Global Data Service is one of its most popular goods.
In the Canadian Arctic city of Inuvik, where the temperatures can fall to tens of degrees under zero Fahrenheit, Kepler placed Kymeta’s next-generation u8 satellite-cellular data service to the assessment. The cold-weather trial was positive, the two firms reported today. Uplink, as well as downlink speeds, reached 100 megabits per second (Mbps), enabling each satellite pass to transmit over 2 gigabytes of data.
“The Kymeta u8 outperformed our standards when used for the Kepler’s Global Data Service.” Kepler’s chief technology officer, as well as co-founder Wen Cheng Chong, stated in a press release. “Our recent research and development activities showed not only the capacity of u8 to carry several more gigabytes of data for every pass than anticipated, but also its ability to work in polar conditions, where many of Kepler’s early adopters’ function,” he added.
Satellite constellations in the low Earth orbit, according to Chong, “require antennas which can follow the satellite across the sky and ‘switch’ to many other satellites in constellation close-instantaneously,” which Kymeta is one of the first to accomplish. The test would help Kymeta set a path for potential alliances with several satellite mega-constellations, according to David Harrover. He serves as the senior vice president in charge of the global sales at Kymeta. “Many of our clients are interested in connectivity with LEO satellite systems, and this analysis virtually guarantees the u8 and Kymeta Connect’s durability as well as have a strategy that takes full advantage of LEO satellites’ improved utility,” he added.