Thursday, January 21, 2010

Cisco's Space Router Passes in-Orbit Test

Cisco announced the first successful in-orbit test of its Internet Routing in Space (IRIS) technology. The test was conducted on-board Intelsat's new IS-14 GEO satellite, which was launched on Nov. 23, 2009.

Cisco IRIS is a program to build a radiation-tolerant IP router for satellite and related spacecraft. The IRIS payload will support network services for voice, video and data communications, helping enable government agencies, military units and allied forces to communicate with one another using Internet Protocol and existing ground equipment.

The company noted that IRIS can route data to multiple ground receivers in a single step, eliminating the need to double-hop to a teleport and therefore reducing latency and increasing transponder utilization. The software on the Cisco router and onboard modem can be upgraded in orbit, which increases flexibility.

The IRIS program is a Department of Defense Joint Capability Technology Demonstration (JCTD) managed by Cisco and Intelsat General Corp. The IRIS payload will convert to commercial use following the three-month JCTD ending in April 2010.

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