Arralis announces new Ka-band phased array antennas for IFC

Arralis Ka-band phased array antenna.
Arralis Ka-band phased array antenna.

Arralis has announced new Ka-band analogue phase shifters that could enable electronically-steerable, low-profile antennas to be offered to the commercial and defence inflight connectivity markets in the future.

It says the Arralis compact, lightweight and aerodynamic Ka-band phased array antennas, that need no stabilisation, are 400% smaller than their Ku-band counterparts and are made specifically with airliners, business jets, military aircraft and unmanned aerial vehicles in mind.

Arralis adds that the antenna will open up aircraft markets to high data rates and low-latency satellite communications.

High Throughput Satellite (HTS) communications, of up to 2 Gbps, can provide wideband video streaming and full-motion video capabilities.

The capability is ideally suited to continuously track fast-moving low earth orbit (LEO) satellites where the analogue phase variation allows continuous electronic beam steering. Multiple simultaneous satellite tracking is possible.

The company says the new product sits within Arralis’ family of versatile communications for space, aerospace, transportable and on-the-move applications.

Gary Soul, Arralis VP of Business Development, said: “At the Farnborough Airshow we’ll be exhibiting the Ka-band antenna and highlighting how the Arralis new monolithic microwave integrated circuit (MMIC) phase-shifters have enabled this innovative development.

“We have, in essence, developed the technology that allows users to continuously track and communicate with Low-Earth-Orbit (LEO) satellites in a form that can be easily integrated onto aircraft.

“Fleet operators, network providers and platform users should be very pleased with this innovative technology and the attendant economies of scale that volume production should allow.”

It says the product is ideal to track fast-moving low earth orbit satellites because it is analogue and has continuous phase variation, claiming “a great advantage” over conventional digital phase shifters.

The extended frequency range of the upper band chip is also suitable for the proposed 5G band and will be ideal for beam-steering base stations.

A number of companies are working on low earth orbiting Ka-band satellites that could offer low-latency connections, but technology to track them in real-time has been a challenge.

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