Gilat’s electronically steerable antenna a success

Israeli communications company Gilat Satellite Networkss electronically steerable antenna (ESA) has successfully completed the final phase of a five-year inflight connectivity (IFE) project with Airbus Defence and Space.

The European Clean Sky 2 IFC ESA programme is part of the European Horizon 2020 initiative, which seeks to develop innovative, cutting-edge technology aimed at reducing CO2 gas emissions and noise levels produced by aircraft.

Gilat is a leading global provider of satellite-based broadband communications with 30 years of experience in the market. It’s new SkyEdge II-c platform is a fully integrated flat antenna that was evaluated aboard the Airbus C295 ‘Flight Test Bed 2’ in-flight demonstrator during the programme. The tests used Spacecom’s AMOS-17 advanced digital Ka band satellite paired with Gilat’s Taurus aero MODMAN.

“Gilat’s ESA demonstrated a high level of robustness throughout the test flights, maintaining a stable link during quite aggressive manoeuvres of the aircraft, and over-achieving performance expectations,” said Luis Benitez, chief engineer of Clean Sky 2 Regional FTB2 at Airbus. “Gilat’s ESA, conformally integrated within the wing-to-fuselage fairing of the aeroplane without adding aerodynamic drag, supports a more efficient, quieter, and more advanced aircraft for a wide variety of applications.”

Alex Volodarsky, director of SatCom On-the-Move Programs at Gilat, added: “We have proven our ability to develop and deliver state-of-the-art ESA technology operating with Taurus, our globally deployed aero MODMAN, that adheres to the most stringent requirements of the aerospace industry. We expect our ESA technology to be widely adopted in the IFC market in the coming years, especially in view of numerous NGSO constellation deployment plans.”

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