Capacity from Inmarsat’s Global Xpress (GX) network over Europe and the Middle East will be expanded by commissioning the GX5 satellite, its most powerful satellite to date enabling faster broadband communications to shipping using Fleet Xpress services
Inmarsat also invested in new ground stations in France, Netherlands, Romania, Italy, Cyprus and Greece.
It anticipates GX5 will support the rapid growth in demand for GX services within its coverage, particularly maritime, such as the leisure, merchant and offshore sectors. More new satellites and ground stations will be added to enhance maritime connectivity in the next four years. Inmarsat’s technology roadmap will see a further seven launches by 2024. Five will be in geostationary orbit and two in highly elliptical orbits, providing faster broadband to the Arctic region.
“We have an ambitious vision for the future, and we are progressing the most innovative technology development programme in our history to achieve this,” said Inmarsat chief executive Rupert Pearce.
“We are in this for the long haul, with customer and partner trust based on four decades of meeting our commitments and a bright future ahead, guided by our technology roadmap,” he said.
“Entry into service of GX5 is the first of several exciting steps ahead for us on that journey,” Mr Pearce added.
Ships will not need to invest in new technology as existing GX terminals can use GX5 coverage. This will also be the case when the other satellites are commissioned.
Inmarsat chief technology officer Peter Hadinger explained the investment in new satellites.
“Our fully funded technology roadmap will lead to forthcoming launches for our sixth generation of satellites, two I-6s, then on to GX7, GX8 and GX9 and two Arctic payloads, GX10A and GX10B, to provide further fresh impetus to our GX success story,” he said.
“Our partners and customers can confidently invest in long-term, transformational global digitalisation strategies based on Inmarsat’s innovative technology roadmap for the future,” said Mr Hadinger.
Fleet Xpress combines Ka-band connectivity over GX and L-band coverage from FleetBroadband. L-band capacity will be vastly increased when the two I-6 satellites are commissioned in future years.
Ship connectivity and enabled applications are being discussed in depth during Riviera’s Vessel Optimisation Webinar Week, 7-11 December 2020 - use this link for more details and to register for the remaining webinars