Eutelsat has commissioned a nano-satellite which will be used to assess the performance of low earth orbit (LEO) satellites in providing narrowband connectivity for objects.
Eutelsat LEO for Objects (ELO) will be built by Tyvak International SRL and will draw on the technology of Sigfox, which runs a unique global narrowband network dedicated to the IoT.
Scheduled to launch in 2019, ELO will "backhaul" information from objects located in areas that are not served by terrestrial networks and offer redundancy on existing terrestrial network coverage.
Jean-Hubert Lenotte, chief strategy officer at Eutelsat, said: “With the expansion of the Internet of Things, new services are being developed in a wide range of sectors including smart cities, the mining industry, agriculture and logistics. We are delighted to be exploring new avenues through the development of this nano-satellite, which once again demonstrates the intrinsic complementarity between terrestrial networks and satellite technology.
"By analysing the compatibility of LEO and connected objects, and working with recognised partners in the field, Eutelsat aims to provide an innovative solution which will meet the needs of future clients.”