NanoAvionics to add TIGER-2 satellite to OQ Technology’s growing 5G IoT constellation
(10 May 2021 - NanoAvionics) NanoAvionics has signed a contract with OQ Technology, a multinational satellite Internet of Things (IoT) company, to build, integrate and operate a nanosatellite for their 5G IoT mission named Tiger-2.
The 6U satellite is the second mission for the Lithuanian smallsat bus manufacturer and mission integrator with OQ Technology and the latest addition to OQ Technology’s growing low Earth orbit (LEO) constellation of nanosatellites. Their constellation intends to provide basic commercial IoT and M2M services, using 5G connectivity, to customers with a focus on Africa, Middle East, Asia and Latin America.
OQ Technology expects to generate revenue with this satellite, scheduled to be launched this year. To meet that deadline, the company will take advantage of NanoAvionics’ fast satellite built-time of a few months, a result of its automotive approach for speedy bus manufacturing. Following the launch, OQ Technology aims to quickly add another two missions to its constellation, followed by a batch of 6 satellites. Through the Tiger-2 mission the company also intends to secure strategic frequency licenses and partnerships in key countries.
Tiger-2 6U satellite assembly in NanoAvionics cleanroom (courtesy: NanoAvionics)
“Tiger-2 is an example of a NewSpace startup breaking barriers and racing with time to get to orbit within a few months, while using an agile approach to quickly deliver 5G connectivity,” said Omar Qaise, founder and CEO of OQ Technology. “Without partners like NanoAvionics, achieving such a target within a short time frame will not be possible. To grow our constellation and provide global coverage we plan to add more nanosatellites soon.”
As part of the Tiger-2 mission, NanoAvionics will integrate two payloads into the modular spacecraft. The primary payload will provide satellite-based IoT and M2M services using low frequencies. The secondary payload will demonstrate the feasibility of using high frequencies for 5G IoT radio links. To deliver widespread coverage and 5G IoT/M2M communication, in line with 3GPP recommendations, OQ Technology is using spectrum in the mid band 5G (Sub-6 GHz) frequency bands.
Tiger-2 is a continuation of the collaboration between NanoAvionics and OQ Technology, following MACSAT, the world’s first agile nanosatellite mission dedicated to 5G IoT in LEO, led by OQ Technology and supplied by NanoAvionics.
Vytens J. Buzas, CEO NanoAvionics said: “Our nano- and microsats are ideal for IoT and Earth observations with single, formation and constellation setups and our rapid integration accelerates the time to market applications for companies like OQ Technology. Over 90 percent of our customers already ask for full mission services including built, integration, launch brokerage and mission operations. One key element for the success of our mission operations is that we’ve significantly increased how frequently our nano- and microsatellites can send data back to Earth data through the global ground station networks of our partners.”
OQ Technology is the first 5G IoT operator, building a global hybrid system that combines both satellite and terrestrial wireless networks. It’ll enable expansion of the 4G and 5G IoT footprint globally, which plays a critical role in enabling mobility in vertical markets such as smart cars and drones, transport, logistics, and maritime. Moreover, it provides a unique value for low latency applications (which are critical for 5G) as the satellite are in low earth orbit and provide few milliseconds latency communication which traditional GEO satellites operators cannot do.
Their hybrid system will provide seamless connectivity using 5G standards, terrestrial 5G hardware and chips for a variety of IoT applications for environmental monitoring and agriculture, logistics, maritime, smart metering, mining and oil & gas, aviation, and defence. OQ Technology already holds patents in using narrowband cellular IoT over non-terrestrial networks and is licensing its satellite frequencies globally.
Qaise said: “What makes OQ Technology different is its combination of cellular and satellite technologies giving coverage in poorly connected areas with a low-cost solution that can match existing but expensive M2M and VSAT satellite products. We do this using same mobile 5G chips and a low-cost infrastructure of LEO nanosatellites. This allows us to bring the 5G revolution to countries where terrestrial infrastructure and expensive satellite costs have been a bottle neck, depriving many regions from catching up with the latest of the telecommunication industry. OQ Technology is here to change this soon and make digitalization available everywhere.”
NanoAvionics is a smallsat bus manufacturer and mission integrator currently based in five locations across the USA, UK and Lithuania. The company’s efforts are focused on enabling critical satellite functions and optimising their hardware, launch and satellite operation costs by providing end-to-end small satellite solutions – ranging from single missions to constellations. Its core engineering team has implemented over 85 successful satellite missions and commercial projects during the past several years. With modularity as the fundamental principal of NanoAvionics systems’ architecture, NanoAvionics provides economic viability to a wide range small satellite constellation-based missions, businesses and organizations worldwide.
About OQ Technology
OQ Technology is the world’s first satellite 5G IoT operator that provides global cellular Internet-of-Things and Machine-to-Machine communication solutions through satellites. The company has successfully implemented and demonstrated Narrowband IoT connectivity over Low Earth Orbit satellites and is deploying a global constellation to provide 5G IoT telecommunication services for mobile operators and customers in industries such as energy, mining, logistics, maritime, agriculture, and defense. The company’s patented technology that can be easily embedded in existing 5G chips allows billions of users around the world to have ubiquitous IoT connectivity anywhere and using both terrestrial and satellite networks.