NBAA Convention News

Satcom makers announce plan to integrate Iridium, Inmarsat

 - September 20, 2007, 8:02 AM

Satcom makers International Communications Group (Booth No. 3705) and Thrane & Thrane (Booth No. 645) said they are teaming to integrate Iridium and Inmarsat satellite services in a single product.

Combining ICG’s ICS-200 dual-channel Iridium interface unit with Thrane & Thrane’s Inmarsat Aero-HSD+ satcom gives users simultaneous access to low-cost Iridium voice services and Inmarsat high-speed broadband capability, noted Armin Jabs, president of Newport News, Va.-based ICG.

Through the Thrane & Thrane satcom terminal, callers can access Inmarsat and Iridium voice channels from a single handset. The first integrated ICS-200/Aero-HSD+ systems are expected to become available by year-end.

Jesper Baekgaard, aeronautical market manager for Thrane & Thrane, the Danish manufacturer of Inmarsat-based terminals and land earth stations, said that instead of a complete retrofit, “making existing Thrane & Thrane Inmarsat systems Iridium-capable becomes a simple matter of installing the ICS-200 component.”

Earlier this year, ICG agreed to incorporate the Flight Explorer Professional aircraft situational display flight tracking system with ICG’s CIS-100 and ICS-120 satellite units. Both feature single- channel Iridium transceivers and internal GPS receivers.
The melding of technologies enables worldwide flight planning system integration, route building, checking and display, airport information, user-selectable graphic overlays, map and background image overlays and predictive air traffic. The system can also display weather from five different providers and allows for overlay and animation of North American Nexrad images.

Also this year, ICG gained PMA approval for satellite communications systems on Gulfstream 150 bizjets, using the ICS-200 dual Iridium transceivers with fax option.