HOW INMARSAT WORKS
Inmarsat has been at the forefront of mobile satellite services for over 31 years. They are recognised leaders in our field and they continue to introduce new technologies that redefine the standard for our industry.
Are among the largest commercial communications satellites ever launched.
Replacing their highly successful predecessors - the Inmarsat-2 and Inmarsat-3 spacecraft
Together they have the ability to deliver simultaneous voice and data at speeds of about half a megabit per second.
Each I-4 is a veritable powerhouse compared with the Inmarsat-3 spacecraft, offering:
- Greater call capacity than all five I-3s put together
- 60 times more power than any one of its predecessors
- 12 times greater efficiency in its use of radio spectrum
- 16 times the capacity
- 25 times the receiver sensitivity.
- A single global beam that covers up to one-third of the Earth's surface, apart from the poles.
- 19 wide spot beams that provide continuous coverage across the same region for Inmarsat's existing high-end services, including Fleet F77, Fleet F55 and F33, and maritime mini-M.
- An additional 228 narrow spot beams, designed to form the backbone of Inmarsat's broadband services
- Together the I-4 beams will service about 85 per cent of the world's landmass, covering approximately 98 per cent of the global population
Orbital Operations and Call Flow
The Inmarsat satellites are positioned in geostationary orbit. This means they follow a circular orbit in the plane of the Equator at a height of 35,600km, so they appear stationary relative to a point on the Earth's surface.
The satellites are controlled from the Satellite Control Centre (SCC) at Inmarsat HQ in London, which is responsible for keeping the satellites in position and for ensuring the onboard systems are fully functional at all times.
Data on the status of the Inmarsat satellites is supplied to the SCC by four tracking, telemetry and control (TT&C) stations located at Fucino, Italy; Beijing in China; Lake Cowichan, western Canada; and Pennant Point, eastern Canada. There are also back-up stations at Eik in Norway and Aukland, New Zealand.
A call from an Inmarsat mobile terminal goes directly to the satellite overhead, which routes it back down to an LES. From there the call passes into the public phone network for connection to home, office or cell.
The flow of communications traffic through the Inmarsat network is monitored and managed by the Network Operations Centre (NOC) at Inmarsat HQ.
The NOC is supported by network co-ordination stations (NCS). Their primary role is to help set up each call by assigning a channel to the mobile terminal and the appropriate LES. There is one NCS for each ocean region and for each Inmarsat system (Inmarsat A, B, C, etc). Each NCS communicates with all the land earth station operators in its ocean region, the other NCSs and the NOC, making it possible to distribute operational information throughout the system
With the launch of BGAN, two new gateways, called Satellite Access Stations (SASs), are being introduced. Both are owned by Inmarsat. The first, in Burum, The Netherlands, will be operated by Inmarsat partner Xantic, and the other, in Fucino, Italy, by another partner, Telespazio.
BGAN - The broadband mobile office
BGAN enables you to set up a broadband mobile office in minutes – wherever you are in the planet. BGAN is the world's first mobile communications service to deliver broadband data and voice simultaneously, through a single, truly portable device. It is also the first mobile communications service to offer guaranteed data rates on demand..
Simultaneous voice and broadband data
With a single BGAN device, you can access data applications at broadband speeds and make phone calls at the same time. In a world-first for mobile services, you can also select guaranteed data rates on demand, with a choice of rates to suit your application requirements. And to ensure bandwidth availability, network capacity can also be re-directed to areas of heavy usage.
BGAN terminals are compact, lightweight and designed to be carried as easily as a laptop. The smallest BGAN terminal weighs less than a kilo. A fully functional broadband mobile office can be set up and shut down in minutes.
BGAN supports the latest IP services, as well as traditional circuit-switched voice and data. Integrating seamlessly with your corporate networks, it supports legacy applications while providing a smooth upgrade path to IP. There are terminals for single users and small teams, which can be connected to a laptop PC via a wired or wireless connection. For added flexibility, the BGAN LaunchPad can be customized to your requirements.
Inmarsat's name is synonymous with reliable communications, built on our proven track record in the provision of maritime safety services. The network capacity of our new Inmarsat-4 satellites is 16 times greater than our previous generation of satellites, delivering a massive boost to an already highly available network. In addition, the entire system is backed by 24/7 customer support from our Partner organizations.
Easy to use
BGAN is designed for simplicity and ease of use. No specialist technical expertise is required to set up or use the service. It's also easy to manage costs, because users can track service usage and charges in real-time. The same device can be used worldwide and the user interface is standard across all terminals.
Direct connections to the satellite means there are never any compatibility issues like those encountered with local telecoms networks.
Inmarsat has vast experience in providing secure communications to military and government customers. BGAN meets these exacting requirements and supports all major VPN products and encryption standards.
How it works
• Integrated solution for voice and data.
• High-speed data transmission (up to ½ Mb).
• Portable, roughed designed and lightweight terminals (starting from
less than 1Kg.)
• Flexible rates: Variable/guaranteed data rates (depending on demand)
• Supports IP and circuit-switched applications.
• Multiple data interface options.
• Easy to use: same interface for all the terminals.
• Highly secure access to corporate VPNs. All major encryption
standards supported (Cisco, Nortel, Netscreen, Checkpoint).
• On-line access to account and billing information
Key activities that BGAN supports
• LAN access
• File transfer
• Internet access
• Intranet/extranet access
• Video-conferencing / video broadcast
BGAN supports both circuit-switched and packet-switched voice and data services.
IP packet-switched data services:
• Standard class - with variable bit rate service (Up to 492 kbps)
• Streaming class - with guaranteed bit rate service (32,64,128, 256 kbps)
– send and received
• Voice: Basic telephony (4 kbps toll quality)
• Data (64 kbps ISDN)
• Multimedia (64 kbps, H.324/m)
• Supplementary services (e.g. call forwarding)
• Short Messaging Services (SMS)
IsatPhone PRO -
Inmarsat has launched its first global handheld satellite phone - IsatPhone Pro - which has been purpose-built for its network.