Partnership extends LTE coverage using helicopters and UAVs

August 20, 2019 //By Jean-Pierre Joosting
Partnership extends LTE coverage using helicopters and UAVs
Hughes Network Systems in partnership with Virtual Network Communications (VNC) will extend mobile network connectivity using an integrated combination of deployable LTE technology from VNC with Hughes JUPITER™ and HM satellite systems. 

The new systems support various global LTE applications for government, militaries, first responders, and commercial Mobile Network Operators (MNOs).

"We're excited to work with Hughes to help expand high speed 4G services cost-effectively in underserved parts of the world, as well as providing the tactical edge for military and first responders," said Mohan Tammisetti, chief executive officer of VNC. "VNC developed this innovative, edge-centric approach to positively impact lives and keep critical missions connected. Additionally, a new 5G solution is on our development roadmap and we look forward to integrating it with the Hughes JUPITER platform.”

Government and military

Designed to provide wireless coverage for soldiers or first responders, the new Hughes HeloCell™ integrates LTE technology from VNC with the Hughes HeloSat™, which provides Beyond Line of Sight (BLoS) communications on rotary-wing aircraft. For military and emergency applications, the Hughes and VNC technologies combine to form an "airborne cell tower" when installed aboard a helicopter or an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). The system provides an extended cellular coverage radius of tens of kilometers, with the satellite terminal backhauling the mobile traffic to and from the network core. It can also scale to support more than 100 simultaneous active users on a single, layered system architecture.


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