Integrated satellite and terrestrial network operator Intelsat has made news recently – both in disaster relief and in the more sedate area of commercial and business aviation services.
Intelsat has joined a number of big names in telecommunications that have been supporting the relief effort in Tonga, where last week a volcanic explosion and subsequent tsunami knocked out a number of undersea internet cables, disconnecting a region that is home to over 100,000 people.
Intelsat, in cooperation with Australian operator Telstra and New Zealand operator Spark, has deployed emergency communications services to support humanitarian aid to Tonga and the archipelago for Digicel Tonga (whose efforts we reported late last week) and Tonga Communications Corporation.
Intelsat is providing space-based broadband connectivity on Horizons 3e and Intelsat 18, while partners Telstra and Spark are providing the ground infrastructure, including VSAT hubs at their teleports, uplink, internet access and remote kits.
The services provided are now fully provisioned, expanding broadband and voice services.
Additionally, Intelsat is providing services in conjunction with Optus, owned by Singapore’s Singtel, to the New Zealand Defence Force, which will provide humanitarian support in Tonga.
Intelsat has also been in the news after satellite networking technology company Gilat Satellite Networks announced that it was expanding its strategic partnership in commercial aviation with the operator.
To enable the expansion of commercial and business aviation services in Asia, Intelsat will be using Gilat’s SkyEdge II-c system, which, in addition to providing in-flight connectivity, is designed to deliver fixed and mobility services for maritime and land mobility.
Its management system, TotalNMS, enables full configuration, control and monitoring of all system elements and remote terminals. SkyEdge II-c is a proven operational system that, Gilat says, allows aviation service providers like Intelsat to streamline service fulfilment and provide a superior user experience to airline passengers.