Ligado, Mavenir Partner to Develop Base Stations for 5G Mobile Satellite Network

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Mobile communications company Ligado Networks advanced its plan to deploy the 5G mobile satellite network for the Internet of Things, announcing it is partnering with Mavenir to develop base stations for advanced connectivity services that enable business-critical operations anywhere in the United States and North America.

Ligado’s 5G satellite IoT network will support tens of millions of mobile devices powering critical machine-to-machine communications for businesses requiring ubiquitous, continental coverage. The company plans to launch service trials in 2022, providing standalone satellite or multi-layer connections to enterprise customers in the transportation, agriculture, utilities, and energy sectors.

The satellite network adds extended coverage and network redundancy to the company’s planned 5G mobile private network solution, thereby enabling always-on connectivity and coverage across an enterprise’s entire footprint. It will also add to the capabilities of other terrestrial wireless operators by making use of mainstream, low-cost chipsets and devices that can support both mobile satellite and terrestrial connectivity.

Ligado plans to adapt 3GPP standards-based technology for mobile satellite use, which will enable the network to support devices using mainstream, low-cost chipsets that can also operate on terrestrial IoT networks. With the 22-meter reflector-based antenna of Ligado’s SkyTerra 1 satellite, the network will also support the small, low-cost IoT devices being used for innovative applications like vehicle diagnostics, environmental monitoring, first-responder connectivity, and smart metering.

Mavenir’s complete portfolio of cloud native solutions provides mobile core, IoT, and Open vRAN for 5G.

The partnership highlights Ligado’s industry leadership in developing IoT standards for mobile satellite networks. The company has led work within the 3GPP to develop such standards, which will help satellite and terrestrial networks operate in harmony.