In partnership with Space Norway, Inmarsat will launch the world’s first and only high-speed mobile broadband capacity for mobility segments in the Arctic region. High-speed connectivity is vital to Arctic offshore exploration as well as the growing number of merchant and cruise ships that transit the Northwest Passage.

The Northwest Passage connects Asia and the East Coast of North America via Arctic seas. It considerably reduces transit times and the area is becoming more popular with cruise passengers and fishing vessels. At the same time, new north east Russian gas facilities contribute strongly to cargo moving over the Northern Sea Route. This has resulted in rising demand for high-speed mobile broadband service capability. 

Arctic Region Satellites

To achieve this, Inmarsat, a global supplier of global mobile satellite communications, and Space Norway, a company that owns and leases out space-related infrastructure, will extend the Global Xpress (GX) network with Arctic region satellites. GX is the world’s first and only globally available, high-speed broadband network. The new GX Arctic payloads (GX10A & 10B) will be placed into Highly Elliptical Orbits (HEO), ensuring continuous coverage above 65 degrees North and will have the ability to direct capacity in real-time to the areas of highest demand.

They represent the world’s first and only mobile broadband payload dedicated to the Arctic region and will be integrated into the current and planned Fleet Xpress service network. The additional payloads are scheduled to launch in 2022.