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Intellian launches first 1.25 metre Ku-Ka convertible VSAT system

The new v130NX is a flexible system supporting Ku-band and Ka-band (2.5 GHz Wide) networks The new v130NX is a flexible system supporting Ku-band and Ka-band (2.5 GHz Wide) networks

Intellian has launched v130NX, the latest model in its new NX Series VSAT antenna portfolio. The terminal is the first Ku-Ka convertible VSAT terminal with a 1.25-metre reflector, making it suitable for high-speed global Internet on ships, offshore vessels, and superyachts.

{mprestriction ids="1,2"} The v130NX is a flexible system supporting Ku-band and Ka-band (2.5 GHz Wide) networks. It is also compatible with GEO (Geostationary Earth Orbit), MEO (Medium Earth Orbit) and LEO (Low Earth Orbit) constellations. As with all NX Series antennas, the v130NX is easily converted from Ku-band to Ka-band by changing the Radio Frequency (RF) Assembly and Feed, as the reflector and radome are already optimised for operation across both frequency bands.

The v130NX has been designed to be highly efficient and benefits from high-power BUC options up to 40 W, providing the highest RF performance of any 1.25-meter system currently available.

Its smart satellite handover capability (enabled by an integral mediator and orbit-agnostic tracking proficiency) provides a seamless network service on any satellite. This delivers resilience, reliability, and redundancy whilst maximising the long-term value of the investment by reducing the cost of migrating to future GEO High Throughput Satellites (HTS) and low-latency MEO and LEO networks.

According to Intellian, the v130NX is easy to install, commission, and manage. It uses a single cable, which combines Tx, Rx, and DC power, to simplify installation. The new AptusNX interface enables the antenna to connect to any network in minutes and provides remote access for ease of operation and maintenance. The NX Series also features a modular design, which results in lower cost of ownership throughout the entire lifecycle. It improves reliability and can speed up maintenance and lower costs further with a 40 per cent reduction in spare parts needed.

“With lower total cost of ownership and incredible performance, the v130NX offers the quality and reliability that our customers demand for better crew and guest connectivity, as well as digital vessel operations and fleet management,” said Eric Sung, CEO of Intellian. “With the addition of our new NX Series matching radomes concept, we are also giving our superyacht customers a little something extra – the ability to meet both the style and performance criteria unique to the luxury sector with the v130NX and the entire NX Series.” {/mprestriction}

Related items

  • How much does a merchant ship pay for its VSAT communications?

    Many years ago and in another industry, not so distant from maritime connectivity… I wrote a piece providing viewpoints on “how much an airline would pay for an early release movie (early window content is the industry term). The piece got me into a considerable amount of bother, writes Joshua Flood, senior research consultant at Valour Consultancy.

    The fundamental issue being how secretive these negotiations were and Hollywood studios, airlines and their content service providers did not wish to shed any light upon the subject. Or I was terribly wrong in my viewpoints. I will stick to the former point.

    Now after many years elsewhere, (similar to Yoda in swamp planet of Dagobah), I have decided to return to one of my favorite types of pieces.

    To push myself further, I plan to write a series of pieces talking about how each type of commercial vessel (merchant, fishing, passenger, offshore and leisure) would pay for their connectivity solutions, typically VSAT and MSS.

    Merchant satellite subscriptions

    Addressing the title of this piece, merchant ships come in a number of shapes, sizes and purposes.

    Breaking out the merchant market from a bird’s eye view; there are roughly 150,000 MSS and VSAT satellite subscriptions in the market. This may confuse some, due to the popularly touted figure of 80-90,000 merchant vessels (depending on your source and classifications). Clearly, this number is less than the number of maritime satellite subscriptions.

    To quickly quash this, a significant number of large merchant vessels require multiple terminals for safety purposes. In addition, some vessels will also subscribe to a multitude of solutions for certain purposes. An example could be subscribing Ku-band VSAT services from Intelsat or Eutelsat, Fleetbroadband from Inmarsat and Certus from Iridium.

    Emergence of VSAT technology

    In the past, merchant operators were satisfied with just MSS (L-band) services, however, over the last decade the use of VSAT technology has become a dominant force within all commercial maritime vessels. There are around 20,000 VSAT merchant vessels active today.

    Looking into the key types of merchant vessels. There is an array of different variations. And when speaking about shipping, certain regions are known for their trade. Asia and Northern Europe for commodity and container vessels, as an example.

    Extra special LNGs

    One of my favourite research interviews of 2021 was with a Cypriot service provider. I won’t say which one or whom, however, it was most definitely one of my most entertaining.

    It was almost like having a conversation with the Cheshire Cat in Alice of Wonderland. I went through a list of vessel types with “the Cat” providing their average monthly airtime fees the company gets for connectivity airtime packages. Bulk carriers, a short grunt and allocated to the bottom of the list of data usage and associated ARPU revenue. MPP and ro-ro vessels followed in quick succession, just above bulk carriers. General cargo and container vessels pique his interest and were placed in middle position of the rankings. PCC and vehicle carriers excite Mr Cat further.

    Finally, we reached tankers, and LPG and LNG types cropped up.

    With a delightful purr, “Beautiful, Joshua! We love both, although LNGs are extra special. LNGs are our favourites!”

    I still chuckle at this answer.

    VSAT connectivity – let’s talk numbers

    Moving away from this abstract narrative, the merchant market is highly fragmented and different vessel types have a big difference in their respective airtime ARPU, depending on usage type, areas of coverage and congestion of such areas.

    In general, globally, the VSAT connectivity ARPU for a bulk carrier will just surpass $1,300 per month. An LNG tanker will be in the range of $3,000 to $4,000 per month with lucrative value-add service inclusions.

    As such, the customer type and their fleet of vessels are very important. Also, I will also state the more prestigious customers know how valuable their business is worth and therefore expect very good service and also heavy discounts. In fact, some prestige names are not as lucrative as some outsiders perceive.

    In 2019, Valour Consultancy estimated the average connectivity package per merchant vessel was around $800 (combining both MSS and VSAT services). MSS service per vessel are less than $500 per month generally.

    For Ku-band, this works out around $1,500 and Ka-band around $1,300. The latter will have gone up in 2020, too. For more information on the final point and our latest maritime connectivity research, please download our latest report brochure for more information here.

    Average Monthly Connectivity Revenues in Merchant Vessel in 2019

    MSS only

    <$500

    MSS & VSAT

    $800

    Ku-band

    $1,500

    Ka-band

    $1,300 (this will have increased in 2020 & 2021)

    Bulk Carrier

    $1,300

    LNG

    $3,000 to $4,000

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