Press Release

Tests of a new flying broadband system at Esrange

By SpaceRef Editor
August 19, 2005
Filed under , , ,

In the end of August, a high altitude balloon will be released from Esrange for an EU project called Capanina. The project is run by the University of York in England and involves several European as well as two Japanese business partners. The first test day is planned for August 20, but may be postponed depending on weather conditions.

The purpose of the balloon launch is to test a new way to deliver wireless broadband to users in remote, rural areas or – for example – fast moving trains.

The balloon will take the equipment to the project’s nominal operating altitude of 22-25 km and fly for about 6 hours. The coverage area from this height will be 60 km in diameter.

In the future, this technique could come in use in people’s every-day life in many important ways, for example by linking people in remote places together with more civilised areas or by quickly establishing temporary communication platforms. This could be useful after natural disasters or more temporarily during a large event like the Olympic Games, when the communication capacity needs to be considerably increased.

Advanced communication systems Two communication systems will be tested. One is a high speed radio link that can provide the user with broadband transmission with data rates of up to 120 Mbit/s. The other system is an optical system using lasers. Tests have already been performed successfully in England in 2004 with tethered balloons at 300 m altitude. The tests at Esrange are the second stage in the trials.

Read more on the Capanina website.

For more information please contact:

Olle Persson, Esrange Project manager, Swedish Space Corporation/Esrange
Tel: +46 980 72205

Marco Bobbio Pallavicini, Aerospace systems engineer, Carlo Gavazzi Space
Tel: +39 02 380481 (or the switchboard at Esrange +46 980 72000)

  Swedish Space Corporation is a comprehensive space industry. We develop, launch and operate space systems as well as test new space and air systems. Our activities are located at Esrange, our own aerospace operation facility in northern Sweden, and at our engineering centre in Solna.

SpaceRef staff editor.