To make this website work, we log user data. By using Shephard's online services, you agree to our Privacy Policy, including cookie policy.

Open menu Search

QEST hits gold in technology awards

2nd December 2008 - 18:19 GMT | by The Shephard News Team


German Ku-band antenna developer QEST has collected a Frost & Sullivan award for the innovations in its emerging Ku-band satellite antenna for aircraft. Designed to support megabit rates between the aircraft and the ground, the system is being developed in partnership with California’s Tecom Industries.

International consultancy Frost & Sullivan presented the company with one of its annual awards for European technology innovation in London last month. “By developing this antenna and ensuring its easy deployment and customisation through the use of modular components, QEST could help facilitate the revival of inflight broadband,” said F&S analyst Anirudh Srinivasan.

QEST reported that it had completed a first prototype and was carrying out initial tests. “The first results look extremely promising and we’re aiming to start production in the middle of next year,” said chief technology officer Jörg Oppenländer.

In September QEST announced that it had teamed with US antenna specialist Tecom to commercialise its designs in an effort to make headway in the airline Ku-band connectivity market. The deal mirrors a similar arrangement between Starling of Israel and US-based EMS Technologies which paid off recently in a major order from Panasonic for equipment to support its emerging eXconnect service.

Based at Holzgerlingen in southern Germany, QEST first came to the attention of the industry when it unveiled a unique, highly compact dual L/Ku-band design at the WAEA show in Toronto 15 months ago. That solution was designed to exploit the high bandwidth of Ku-band to deliver large volumes of data to the aircraft, while using available L-band capacity such as Inmarsat to send smaller volumes of reply traffic in the opposite direction. The wording of the Frost & Sullivan citation indicates that it is now focusing on an all-Ku-band product.

QEST and Tecom are tackling a market that is already hotly contested by players such as AeroSat (supplier to service provider Row 44), ViaSat (supplying ARINC/Rockwell Collins SKYLink/eXchange) and EMS Technologies/Starling. QEST is providing core RF components such as the antenna aperture and signal-processing modules, and Tecom is responsible for overall systems engineering, antenna positioning and control subsystems, product qualification and certification, and after-sales support.

The Shephard News Team


The Shephard News Team

As part of our promise to deliver comprehensive coverage to Premium News and Defence Insight …

Read full bio

Share to