Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 13

cially viable equipment sets and software that enables such switching.” Though satellite systems don’t require as much switching as ground-based communications, they can’t track a single satellite during a long flight. When planes fly across the U.S., for example, they usually need to access three satellites. Switching from one satellite to the next is not as simple as when cell phones shift from one terrestrial antenna to another. “There’s a momentary break when you switch,” said Dave Jupin, Product Line Manager at Hughes Network Systems. “We have to determine when to make the switch and reorient the antenna so it’s focused on another satellite.” Switching from one antenna to another highlights the complexity of these systems. Antennas must always focus precisely on the satellite they’re communicating with. They must also work at varying speeds, and beams must be very accurately positioned so they don’t cause interference with other communication signals. “To make these systems work, you have to provide Doppler compensation for jets flying at high speeds,” Jupin said. “You’ve also got to be sure that the plane’s communications don’t interfere with other satellites.” At present, most of the satellite links use the Kuband, a technology that’s widely deployed. That’s likely to change over the short term. Satellite providers are gearing up for Ka-band links, which provide far more bandwidth. “Everyone’s looking forward to Ka-band; it offers more capacity. In the next three to five years, there will be enough Ka-band satellites to support aircraft,” Jupin said. One example of this interest level came in April when Honeywell signed a 20-year pact with satellite provider Inmarsat to sell aircraft antenna that will communicate with three Ka-band satellites that Inmarsat plans to launch over the next couple years. Honeywell expects to earn nearly $3 billion
SAE electronics+connectivity

Antennas from Gogo communicate with landbased towers, so they can be more compact. over the two decades of the deal. While providers look to the future, existing satellite technologies are not going away. Vendors can use new technologies to squeeze more capability from satellite systems that are already orbiting. “We introduced a Ku-Band option combined with a router that uses compression algorithm to optimize available bandwidth,” said Yannick Dansereau, Lead Product Manager for Cabin Systems at Bombardier. Some techniques for reducing demand for satellite bandwidth will occur on the aircraft. One is to store some of the most commonly accessed material on hard drives before the aircraft takes off. Servers can then disseminate it without communicating with the satellite. “There’s a significant increase in the amount of content that may be stored and updated to support the content in greatest demand by passengers,” St. Amour said. “In the future, low-cost data and content loading technology will be deployed, enabling rapid updating of onboard servers with extremely large quantities of data. This will shift data loading from satellite links and physical efforts to terrestrial GSM and Wi-Fi links, reducing costs and security risks and improving commercial flexibility.”

Terry Costlow

September 5, 2012

13



Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012

Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012
Contents
The Ups and Downs of Connectivity
Tech Report
Securing IT in the sky
Data Collection Made Easy
Ad Index
Resource Links
Upcoming from the Editors
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - Cover1
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - Contents
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - The Ups and Downs of Connectivity
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - Tech Report
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 5
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 6
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 7
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 8
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 9
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 10
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 11
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 12
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 13
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - Securing IT in the sky
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 15
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 16
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 17
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 18
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 19
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - Data Collection Made Easy
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 21
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 22
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 23
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - 24
Electronics & Connectivity - September 5, 2012 - Upcoming from the Editors
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/sae/12DEC1128
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/sae/12DEC0905
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/sae/12DEC0530
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/sae/12DEC0301
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/sae/ec_prototype
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com