Satcom Direct’s tail-mounted Plane Simple Ku-band satcom antenna will first be STC’d for Dassault Falcon 2000-series jets, the company announced this week. Installation of the Plane Simple dual variant antenna on a Falcon 2000LX is currently ongoing at Dassault’s facility in Little Rock, Arkansas, with aerial validation flights to start next month followed by STC approval and service entry in the third quarter.
Plane Simple provisional hardware is already installed on Satcom Direct’s Gulfstream G350 testbed and has been able to provide “true broadband” connectivity during more than 100 test flights. The company will soon be upgrading the G350 with “qualified hardware” and then will STC Plane Simple on this platform by year-end, after the Falcon 2000 approval. Further STCs will follow by year-end, though Satcom Direct was mum on what business jets models might be next.
“Adding a second platform will serve to further verify the benefits of integrating the new advanced technology antenna with the already proven SD ecosystem of hardware, software and terrestrial infrastructure. Our mission is to analyze the performance and deliver a reliable, validated, connectivity solution,” said Chris Moore, the company’s president of business aviation.
The Plane Simple Ku-band antenna is the first in a series of antenna systems being developed by SD in partnership with Germany-based QEST Quantenelektronische Systeme. Once activated, the terminal will support Intelsat’s FlexExec Ku-band service.