Thuraya, ELSE team up to expand satellite services
13 April 2017 | Jason McGee-Abe
Mobile satellite service operator, Thuraya, and Swiss space startup, ELSE, have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to enhance long-term collaborative efforts enhancing satellite connectivity.
The strategic alliance will enable the companies to expand satellite services to customers with machine-to-machine (M2M) and internet of things (IoT) communication, enabled by the Astrocast satellite constellation. They will benefit from each other’s capabilities on multiple fronts including technical and regulatory. They can extend their product and service portfolios considerably besides facilitating expedited access to the market.
“This agreement forms the foundation of an extensive framework and an exciting long-term collaboration towards providing a progressive platform for our partners to offer services beyond basic satellite connectivity,” said Jassem Nasser, Thuraya’s chief strategy officer.
“FUTURA, our future plan encompasses three main pillars, one of which is “New Wave” services for M2M and IoT applications. Our alliance with ELSE serves as a building block for the development of this component of FUTURA and further reaffirms our commitment in building value through partnerships.”
The ELSE team has supported more than ten European Space Agency (ESA) missions, seven nanosatellite missions and is building a network of low-earth-orbit (LEO) nanosatellites named Astrocast that will provide cost effective IoT and M2M services to global enterprises. This mission is also supported by ESA through their ARTES programme.
Fabien Jordan, co-founder and CEO of ELSE, added: “As an established company, Thuraya brings experience, skill and reputable legacy to the table. ELSE shall benefit greatly from their technology and distribution reach and we are very excited about the possibilities this alliance will create.”
The first satellites are scheduled for launch by 2018, as a demonstration mission, with a plan to have a total of 64 satellites in orbit by 2021. Once fully operational, the constellation will provide remote monitoring, geolocation services, predictive maintenance and intelligent data gathering.