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TerreStar Equipped to Deliver Advanced Communications Services Following Successful Deployment of Harris' Antenna Reflector

Satellite Technology

Satellite Technology Feature Article

September 29, 2009

TerreStar Equipped to Deliver Advanced Communications Services Following Successful Deployment of Harris' Antenna Reflector

By Nathesh, TMCnet Contributor

Harris Corporation has deployed the 18-meter antenna deflector the company built for the geosynchronous TerreStar (News - Alert) communications satellite. This will enable TerreStar to deliver the most advanced communications services over large area using only a single satellite instead of a satellite constellation.

According to Harris officials, the large 18m diameter antenna is more beneficial than its 9- or 12-meter counterparts as it can cover a large area and ensure 24/7 delivery of mobile voice, data and video services directly to mobile devices and vehicles in the continental United States and Canada, as well as Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico.
Dan Pearson, group president of Harris Government Communications Systems (News - Alert), said that the antenna is meeting or exceeding all established performance metrics and the successful deployment will hopefully usher in a new era of mobile multimedia services and smartphone communications for United States and Canadian consumers.
The company provided the reflector and the onboard articulating boom to Space Systems/Loral, which designed and built the TerreStar-1 satellite for TerreStar Networks (News - Alert). Featuring a gold mesh reflective surface, the antenna reflector stows much like an umbrella. When the satellite was in operational orbit on July 12, ground controllers sent a command signal to the satellite to unfurl the reflector.
The S-band payload aboard the satellite enables two-way mobile voice, data and video services directly to conventionally sized mobile terminals. The reflector enables the satellite to focus the 2 GHz S-band signals in the United States and Canada in order to provide these Mobile Satellite Services. The S-band antenna and payload are part of a hybrid infrastructure that combines an all-IP satellite and smartphone technology with terrestrial networks.
Company officials at Harris said that the company offers an extensive range of antennas including HF, VHF and UHF antennas for short-, intermediate- and long-range communications for use in manpack, transportable, handheld, vehicular and fixed applications.
Recently, Harris antenna reflector was deployed for Sirius FM-5 Satellite and Harris secured contract to supply satellite services for Carnival cruise ships.

Nathesh is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Nathesh's articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Kelly McGuire

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