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Flat Ka-band antenna does first Transmit/Receive

Kymeta Corporation, which develops flat-panel antenna technologies based on metamaterials, has announced that it has successfully demonstrated bi-directional high-speed internet connectivity with a Ka-band satellite.

This is the first time a metamaterials-based antenna has established an internet connection over a satellite link, says Kymeta, which sees it as the confirmation that it is ready to move into commercial product development and production.

“Seeing our research and development efforts culminate in this successful bi-directional satellite connection is like a dream come true,” said Dr Nathan Kundtz, founder and CTO of Kymeta.

The demonstration was held on December 10, 2013 at Telesat’s teleport in Vancouver, British Columbia (Canada), using Ka-band capacity on Telesat’s Anik F2 satellite.

The completion of the demonstration required obtaining regulatory certifications for Ka-band transmissions, made possible through collaboration with Telesat. iDirect provided the modem technologies used in the demonstration.

After initial tests of bi-directional Internet connectivity and video streaming via the Kymeta transceiver equipment, the team also launched a bi-directional Skype video call from a laptop at the demonstration site to Kymeta’s corporate headquarters in Redmond, Washington (USA), where a team celebration was held.

“This is a tremendous milestone for our company,” said Vern Fotheringham, chairman and CEO of Kymeta.

“This successful demonstration proves that our technology is ready for commercial production, and we’re excited to move full steam ahead to develop transformative products and solutions for fixed, portable and mobile applications.”

Kymeta expects to have prototype units ready for field trials in 2014 with initial availability of commercial products in early 2015.

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