Intelsat General’s FlexAir: Providing Resilient, Secure, High-speed Broadband Connectivity for Today’s Advanced Military Aviation Needs

A KC-135R Stratotanker refuels three F-15 Eagles during air-to-air refueling training over central Oregon.
A KC-135R Stratotanker refuels three F-15 Eagles during air-to-air refueling training over central Oregon.

Somewhere over the Pacific Ocean: Staff on board a C-130 coordinate their next operational mission over enemy territory; reliable, global, high-speed data transmission is essential.

In a remote and hostile region: A manned ISR aircraft is conducting a reconnaissance mission; throughput for full-motion video and security are critical to ensure mission success.

Global data needs are complex and unpredictable. Demand is exploding for high-speed communications to carry out increasingly sophisticated and expanding mission needs worldwide. According to the the 2019 Euroconsult Satellite Connectivity Survey, total capacity demand is expected to increase at a 24% CAGR from 2019-2024 for manned and unmanned government missions around the world.

As a result, today’s military aviation ― whether conducting enroute VVIP communications or engaged in a manned ISR mission — require more robust, reliable, and secure high-speed broadband connectivity whenever and wherever they need it.

And the one-size-fits-all approach no longer suffices. Users need an affordable solution based on their specific data rate and geographic needs. Intelsat General’s FlexAir delivers.

A Single, Powerful, Global Network

FlexAir, a global in-flight connectivity service designed for aircraft with high-performance requirements, combines the world’s most advanced and powerful high throughput satellite technology with multiple widebeams to deliver reliable, seamless, and secure coverage around the world. This multi-layered, uncontested Ku-band network supports a full-range of advanced communications and intelligence-gathering applications, many of which require the ability to transmit high-definition, full-motion video. Being fully integrated with the existing Ku-band platform also offers the resilience of the entire Intelsat Ku-band fleet for unmatched resiliency through redundancy.

Accessing an end-to-end global managed service solution allows users to eliminate the cost and complexity of managing multiple providers and disparate offerings. FlexAir is the only managed service that accommodates different applications and end-user requirements with distinct offerings. The FlexAir service includes terminal validation to ensure compatibility on the Intelsat Flex network and with all applications in use. It also establishes interoperability between Intelsat’s satellite network, its ground network and its terminals to ensure a resilient, reliable connection, 24/7.

The powerful high-throughput Intelsat satellites enable the compact, low-profile antennas required by today’s manned ISR aircraft. These antennas can be tail- or fuselage-mounted and easily used with almost any aero platform. The service includes the ability to roll-on/roll-off when needed to easily switch between di­fferent aircraft.

Naval aviators pilot a P-8A Poseidon.
Indian Ocean, March 19, 2014 – Naval aviators pilot a P-8A Poseidon during a mission to assist in search and rescue operations for Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.

A Customized, Budget-Friendly Solution

Just as important as a globally expansive system is one that is cost-effective. IGC FlexAir delivers the highest data rates at the lowest cost per bit. The service can be customized based on data rate requirements and mission locations. Government customers can select a pay-as-you-go, monthly subscription, or “always on” package, without having to make any upfront commitments.

So whether conducting enroute and VVIP communications or an ISR mission, FlexAir’s powerful, multi-layered managed service solution delivers the value and dependability today’s aero fleet can count on anytime and anywhere.

In short, FlexAir offers:

  • Up to 10 times the capacity of competitive o­fferings
  • Supporting 10x as many users without impacting performance
  • The highest data rates at the lowest cost per bit – up to 15 Mbps x 6 Mbps
  • The speed of Swift Broadband (SBB) at substantially lower costs
  • The required resiliency, reliability, and signal retainability for mission-critical applications
  • 45cm antenna option for a broad range of aircraft
Lockheed MC-130H Hercules with large cloud behind it
Managed service solution offers expansive global coverage to help ensure enroute communications and ISR mission success anytime, anywhere.

Back over the Pacific Ocean: Access to reliable, global, high-speed broadband connectivity enable staff onboard the C-130 to finalize details of their next mission; the military transport heads to its next destination.

Meanwhile, back in a remote and hostile region: By leveraging the power of an advanced managed service solution that provides secure broadband connectivity, the manned ISR completes its ISR mission without a hitch; plans are underway for its next operation.

Missions accomplished.

To learn more about how IGC FlexAir can support mission critical aero operations around the globe, click here or contact Director of Global Network Solutions William Callahan at [email protected], or 1-703-270-4252.

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