Cobham Launches New Ku-band Antenna System for Maritime Applications

At SATELLITE 2017, held earlier this month, Cobham introduced a Ku-band version of its award winning SAILOR 60cm antenna technology platform. The SAILOR 600 VSAT Ku antenna is one of the lightest, most compact and high-performing Ku-band antennas ever developed. It has been designed to enable more vessels to enjoy the benefits of faster, flexible and predictable pay-monthly Ku-band VSAT services. The platform will be available this summer.

The SAILOR 600 VSAT Ku offers a perfect balance between form factor and performance, enabling maritime satcom service providers to extend their portfolio and reach more end-users with a compact, hard-wearing solution that provides the reliability, stability and high throughput normally only possible with 1 meter class antennas. It features the capability to roam between Ku-band wide beams and spot beams, providing additional flexibility for service providers to offer global service availability despite the small antenna size. While providing unmatched performance on traditional Ku-band wide beam satellites, the platform leverages the power of Ku-band High Throughput Satellite (HTS) constellations utilizing spot beams, such as Intelsat's EpicNG satellite series.

Based on a cutting-edge lightweight carbon fibre composites/aluminum design, SAILOR 600 VSAT Ku is incredibly easy to handle and can be installed without the need for a crane in port. As one of the lightest Ku-band 60cm antennas, it introduces the potential for fast and cost-effective installation while retaining the performance and reliability of larger SAILOR VSAT antennas, which are already recognized as the leading technology for enabling maritime broadband on board.

This new VSAT antenna is based on the cutting-edge, software defined SAILOR VSAT technology platform, which has revolutionized the maritime satcom industry's approach to VSAT installation and operation. It offers several key differences to standard VSAT antennas, including the ability to configure dual antenna installations without the need for additional hardware. This can reduce costs significantly for some vessels, where two antennas may be required to ensure a link to the satellite should one be 'blocked' by the vessel's superstructure or nearby structures such as oil platforms.

The SAILOR VSAT technology platform also provides unique diagnostics and automatic event reporting helping service providers to increase service reliability. The use of SNMP Traps,  which improve the reporting of antenna events to shore and the introduction of real-time event reporting support service providers to meet SLAs and end-users to enjoy uninterrupted connectivity. The latest software features included with SAILOR 600 VSAT Ku, also include Shock and Vibration Monitoring, which provides valuable data on the stresses the antenna system is under, helping with planned maintenance and ultimately availability of service.