Tuesday, April 27, 2010

GE Satellite provide Ku data uplinks to NASA unmanned science mission

Ex-military UAV flies across Pacific taking measurements



GE-Satellite, a leading provider of satellite services in the Pacific, was recently chosen by NASA to provide Ku-band satellite connectivity for its ground breaking science mission to study atmospheric and environmental conditions across in the Pacific via Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). 
The NASA Global Hawk Pacific (GloPac) campaign, the first Earth Science mission to use the UAV for atmospheric and environmental research, demonstrates GE-23's capability to support a broad range of mobile broadband applications in the Pacific.
The GE-23 satellite, ideally suited for the mission because of its dynamic coverage in the Pacific, enabled continuous communications throughout the Global Hawk's 14-hour maiden voyage. “The Global Hawk's ability to autonomously fly long distances and remain aloft for extended periods brings a new capability to the science community for measuring and observing large areas of the Earth,” said NASA.
The Global Hawk payload includes an antenna to allow it to continuously transmit data and images via the GE-23 satellite. As part of the environmental research mission, scientists measured atmospheric conditions including greenhouse gases, ozone-depleting substances, aerosols, and constituents of air quality in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere.  Future missions include observations from the equator to the Arctic Circle, and west of Hawaii.
“We are thrilled to be a part of the NASA Global Hawk mission and this exciting new chapter of science history,” says Andrew Jordan, President and CEO of GE-Satellite.
NASA has three Global Hawks, all previously used by the US Air Force, now fitted with 11 scientific instruments to conduct atmospheric research. The Hawks carry over than 400Kg of scientific gadgets, can operate at altitudes up to 65,000 feet and stay aloft for 30 hours while flying a distance of more than 12,600 miles - making the long range continuous measurements possible for the first time.
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