Hybrid Ku-/Ka-band In-Flight Connectivity Antenna Solution for Commercial Aircrafts

Viasat has introduced its second-generation Ku-/Ka-band chipset with an advanced hybrid antenna and complementary radome. The latest dual-band system, aimed at the commercial wide-body aircraft market, will keep passengers and crew connected across commercial Ku and Ka-band Geosynchronous and Non-Geosynchronous satellite networks, virtually anywhere they fly around the globe. The chipset sets into motion an accelerated migration path for commercial airlines to operate on Viasat's global network. It immediately enables worldwide roaming connectivity for new or retrofit aircraft – serving a large and growing portion of their routes on the fastest Ka-band networks, and the balance on global-wide beam or spot beam Ku satellites. Airlines can steadily migrate a greater proportion of their routes to the faster, more economical Ka-band service enabled by a growing array of partner satellites as well as the global ViaSat-3 constellation planned for launch in 2021 and 2022.

Viasat has years of expertise in delivering dual-band antenna systems to the global market. The Company's first-generation chipset served airframes ranging from commercial narrow-body planes to larger senior leader government aircraft.

Key benefits of the Hybrid Ku/Ka-Band Antenna

  • For airlines: Viasat is providing a forward-compatible hybrid chipset solution that leverages today's Ku- and Ka-band networks, but enables airlines to easily transition to the faster, more reliable, more economical Ka-band networks of tomorrow.
  • For passengers and crew: Viasat's hybrid technology allows for continuous connectivity when in-flight.

In-flight, customers will have access to all the Ka-band satellites currently participating in Viasat's global network (WildBue-1, Anik-F2, ViaSat-1, ViaSat-2, and KA-SAT, as well as nbn's SkyMuster I and II and other current and future partner satellites). When out of Ka-band coverage, service will switch to the Ku-band network.

Viasat is continuing to add Ka-band capacity to its global network through partnerships and via its ViaSat-3 global Ka-band constellation, comprised of three ultra-high capacity satellites that are expected to offer complete visible Earth coverage. The first two ViaSat-3 class satellites are under construction to serve the Americas and the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) markets, respectively. These two satellites are expected to be launched by the 2021 timeframe. Viasat has also recently commenced a third ViaSat-3 class satellite for Asia Pacific (APAC), expected to be launched in the 2022 period - enabling full global Ka-band coverage.

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