Intelsat has been granted a patent for a communication system utilizing multiple-in-multiple-out (MIMO) technology for aerial platforms. The system involves a service platform with a greater number of first antennas communicating with second antennas on the aerial platform, selected based on various factors for optimal data transmission. GlobalData’s report on Intelsat gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.

According to GlobalData’s company profile on Intelsat, Satellite communication systems was a key innovation area identified from patents. Intelsat's grant share as of January 2024 was 46%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.

Mimo communication system for aerial platforms with antenna subset selection

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Credit: Intelsat SA

A recently granted patent (Publication Number: US11888569B2) discloses a communication system designed for multiple-in-multiple-out (MIMO) communication with an aerial platform. The system includes a service platform with a plurality of first antennas in line-of-sight MIMO communication with a corresponding set of second antennas on the aerial platform. A controller is responsible for selecting a subset of the first antennas and facilitating the communication of data streams with the aerial platform via the selected subset. The selection process is based on various factors such as aerial platform orientation, antenna spacing, slant range, and frequency of operation, ensuring optimal communication efficiency.

Furthermore, the patent details the configuration of the system, where the controller can control the movement of the selected antennas in three dimensions to maximize data throughput and minimize power consumption by the aerial platform. The system also incorporates artificial intelligence algorithms to process real-time orientation information of the aerial platform, adjusting the antennas to achieve an optimal relative orientation that enhances data throughput. The communication system offers versatility in antenna types, including flat panel, parabolic, or phased array antennas, and can adapt to different scenarios by selecting different subsets of antennas based on the aerial platform's orientation at different periods. Additionally, the system can receive orientation information from a ground station or the aerial platform itself, and includes a ground station for terrestrial communication network connectivity.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData Patent Analytics tracks bibliographic data, legal events data, point in time patent ownerships, and backward and forward citations from global patenting offices. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.