UK antenna manufacturer reveals plans for modular terminal
Connectivity Business News
02 August, 2022
Antenna manufacturer ALL.SPACE on Monday announced plans for a modular ground terminal compatible with terrestrial 3G, 4G and 5G networks. ALL.SPACE is the rebrand for the company previously known as Isotropic Systems.
Founded in 2013, the Reading, England-based company has “been in somewhat of a stealth mode with the capabilities that we’ve been developing,” Brian Billman, chief marketing officer at the company, told Connectivity Business News.
ALL.SPACE’s S2000 series terminal, due to be released before yearend, will have up to 8,100 configurable options starting with three sizes: 60 centimeters (24 inches), 80 centimeters (31 inches) and 1 meter (39 inches), according to its website. The terminal will work with satellites in low Earth orbit (LEO), middle Earth orbit (MEO) and geostationary Earth orbit (GEO). Pricing and power requirements will vary depending on the options selected, Billman said.
“[W]e have created the next chapter for the all-important ground segment,” John Finney, founder and chief executive, said in a statement.
A modular terminal
The next chapter of the space economy’s ground segment is modular, Billman explained. Customers requiring the capabilities of a larger terminal can utilize multiple S2000 terminals and combine the signal “such that they act like a bigger antenna,” he noted.
The system can also be customized to enable edge compute processing, intelligent routing across multiple, simultaneous networks and, in the military version, signals intelligence (SIGINT), electronic intelligence (ELINT), and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR).
The terminal can incorporate antennas from manufacturers such as ST Engineering iDirect, Teledyne Technologies (NYSE: TDY) and SpaceBridge, Billman told Connectivity Business News. Being able to put multiple modems within a single terminal enables a resilient multi-domain, multi-orbit communications terminal, he added.
The modular terminal comes as the U.S. military continues to emphasize the need for modular and interoperable equipment, following a tri-service memorandum in 2019. “Victory in future conflict will in part be determined by our ability to rapidly share information across domains,” according to the memorandum. “Sharing information from machine to machine requires common standards.”
Future terminals for aviation
Demand for multi-orbit terminals is growing. “We’re talking to everyone from mobility providers to traditional fixed-infrastructure services providers, and they all have a demand for multi-orbit solutions,” said Sean Yarborough, vice president at ST Engineering iDirect, said earlier this year in a webinar co-hosted by trade association GVF and Connectivity Business News.
ALL.SPACE has sold out of its projected inventory of the S2000 for 2022 and is building its backlog for 2023, Billman said. And the company is also planning its next set of terminals for verticals with special requirements, such as aviation, he added.
The company raised $37 million in its series B funding round in September 2021, according to Crunchbase. The round was led by space investment specialist Seraphim Capital with participation from small- and medium-sized enterprise investment specialist The Firmament Group, venture capital firm Orbital Ventures and technology investor AE Industrial Partners. The company has also received equity and grant funding from the U.K government.