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Satnews Daily
November 9th, 2015

Honeywell Sends In A Jet...JetWave...For Singapore Airlines' On-Flight Connectivity

[Satnews] Honeywell Aerospace (NYSE: HON) will provide its JetWave satellite communications hardware to Singapore Airlines for connection to Inmarsat’s Global Xpress Aviation broadband solution, giving passengers a seamless experience of global high-speed in-flight connectivity and capability. The solution will be provided through Zodiac Inflight Innovations and SITAONAIR and provide a homelike and officelike Wi-Fi experience aboard aircraft via Inmarsat GX Ka-band network.

Honeywell’s JetWave™ satellite communications terminals enable global connectivity via Inmarsat Aviation’s Global Xpress Ka-band network. Designed to provide broadband-class data connectivity, the hardware and network are optimized for mobility to provide a consistently outstanding passenger experience all over the world. The MCS terminals share the same RF and antenna controller, modem and router hardware, with a tail-mounted antenna (MCS-8000) available for business aviation and a fuselage-mounted antenna (MCS-8200) for larger air transport sized aircraft.

The installation of the first Global Xpress (GX) Aviation system is scheduled for the second half of 2016 and will be equipped on Singapore Airlines’ B777-300ER aircraft, followed by its A380-800s. GX is the only global Ka-band network designed around the requirements of mobile assets, including airplanes. GX Aviation is the first truly global high-speed in-flight connectivity service that will provide aircraft with data rates of up to 50Mbps. Using GX Aviation, passengers will be able to do everything from sending real-time social media updates and emails to live streaming TV, all while in flight and from virtually anywhere in the world, over both land and sea.

“Singapore Airlines is known for its world-class service and sees the value of high-speed Wi-Fi to keep its passengers connected, even on transoceanic flights,” said Brian Davis, vice president, Airlines, Asia Pacific, Honeywell Aerospace. “As consumer electronic devices continue to consume frequency bandwidth, more demand will be placed on high-speed satellite connectivity and infrastructure. Honeywell’s JetWave hardware and Inmarsat’s Global Xpress will support this growth trajectory, giving passengers greater flexibility and not have the frequent in-flight disruptions consumers currently experience on other available systems.”

“In-flight connectivity is a major focus area for airlines across the world, and Global Xpress marks the first time that they can offer a reliable, consistent and high-speed solution to their passengers with global coverage,” said Leo Mondale, president of Inmarsat Aviation. “The fact that an outstanding airline such as Singapore Airlines has selected Global Xpress is further testament to the strength of our offering, and we congratulate our partners Honeywell Aerospace and SITAONAIR on this exciting development.” 

In August, Inmarsat successfully launched a third GX satellite. Together, these three satellites provide seamless global coverage for the GX Aviation network. As demand ramps up, additional capacity will be added to the network, with a fourth Global Xpress satellite already scheduled for launch in 2016. The third launch comes less than three months after Honeywell’s first successful over-the-air test for JetWave on Inmarsat’s GX satellite network. The flight tests validated the reality of a truly seamless experience of connectivity and capability for passengers, airlines and operators.

Vietnam Airlines and Lufthansa have been among the first adopters of JetWave and GX Aviation, bringing the next generation of high-speed in-flight connectivity to their passengers. Vietnam Airlines selected GX Aviation for its A350 fleet, while Lufthansa selected it for its short- and medium-haul fleet. The first Lufthansa aircraft will be fitted with the system in early summer 2016. Honeywell also signed a memorandum of understanding with Air China last year to begin testing GX Aviation on the airline’s A330 aircraft.