Sunday, February 21, 2010

TerreStar Completes Ground Based Beam Forming Test

TerreStar Networks completed its initial on-orbit testing of Ground Based Beam Forming (GBBF) is complete, clearing another hurdle prior to the launch of its hybrid satellite+terrestrial smartphone service. The service is expected to launch in the second half of this year.

The TerreStar GBBF system is the first two-way GBBF system to employ both ground based calibration and beam forming. The system provides the flexibility to deploy over 500 spot beams and manage power and capacity as customer demand dictates.

"Stable, configurable beams are being formed and link performance is meeting our expectations for this phase," said Dennis Matheson, chief technology officer, TerreStar. "We could not have made this tremendous progress without our dedicated partners Hughes Network Systems and Space Systems/Loral."

"Since the launch of our satellite, TerreStar-1, on July 1, 2009, TerreStar has continued to execute on its vision of offering ubiquitous, reliable and resilient mobile service -- virtually anywhere in North America," said Jeffrey Epstein, president & CEO, TerreStar. "Today's 'first' is another milestone on the path to deliver the next generation of mobile services."

  • In September 2009, AT&T agreed to market TerreStar's satellite cellular smartphone. The TerreStar GENUS Smartphone combines AT&T's 3G terrestrial wireless service with TerreStar's all-IP satellite voice and data as a back-up throughout the United States. The TerreStar satellite footprint also covers Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and offshore coastal waters. The satellite-terrestrial smartphone reference design represents the world's first quad-band GSM and tri-band WCDMA/HSPA device running the Microsoft Windows Mobile 6.5 operating system, and offering integrated satellite-terrestrial voice and data capabilities.

  • In July 2009, TerreStar Networks successfully completed the first end-to-end VoIP phone call over its newly launched TerreStar-1, the world's largest, most advanced commercial communications satellite. The call used two handsets developed by EB (Elektrobit).