Inmarsat has welcomed LikeAbird – a specialist in the custom design and manufacture of innovative systems, products and solutions for the UAV and robotics industries – as the latest company to join its Velaris Partner Network.
LikeAbird will soon integrate with Inmarsat’s core miniaturised satcom terminal technology, with a first release expected in early 2023. In addition, it will become an official airtime provider for Inmarsat’s Velaris service.
As the first systems integrator, LikeAbird will meet the evolving needs of customers across a range of UAV markets by integrating Inmarsat’s Velaris connectivity service with its existing solutions. These include flight controllers, autopilots, and beyAIR-MCG (Modular Communication Gateway). BeyAIR-MCG combines short to medium-range radio and redundant cellular datalinks with satcom. This removes the need to have additional terminals onboard, leading to benefits like cost savings and reductions in hardware size, weight and power consumption.
The Uncrewed Aerial Vehicle (UAV) market is evolving rapidly and anticipated to grow at a 57% Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) from 2021 to 2028. A diverse range of technology companies including likeAbird are currently aiming to keep pace with soaring demand – and enable the future of everything from flying taxis to oil and gas survey vehicles.
Anthony Spouncer, Inmarsat’s Senior Director of Advanced Air Mobility (AAM), said “Velaris is going from strength to strength and this exciting new collaboration with LikeAbird has further cemented our partner network as the de-facto centre of excellence for UAV technologies. This announcement also reinforces that Inmarsat does far more than provide datalink technologies. Our company is built on a culture of industry collaboration, using our cutting-edge satellite communication capabilities to deliver bespoke solutions faster than ever before, providing a one-stop shop to access UAV solutions easily and affordably.”
Jarno Puff, LikeAbird’s Chief Technology Officer, added “We strive to provide ground-breaking custom and bespoke solutions that meet the needs of our customers. Inmarsat is the best partner we could have to move forward with this effort.
“This partnership opens the door to many more opportunities for us, so we can collaborate with key technology innovators across the breadth of the uncrewed aviation industry and ultimately have an impact on the future of aviation. We’re immensely excited to see what we achieve together, and look forward to working with the ecosystem of existing partners too.”
Inmarsat’s Velaris Partner Network is an ecosystem of leading companies, all dedicated to pioneering innovations to facilitate safe and secure UAV operations, and realise the industry’s full potential. It utilises Inmarsat’s ground-breaking Velaris global connectivity solution, powered by the award-winning ELERA global satellite network, and builds on the company’s vast expertise of more than 30 years in air traffic management communications.