3GPP, the organization that periodically brings together the main players in the telecommunications sector to define the different communication standards, will include in the definition of the 5G-IoT standard the ‘scenario 4’ or also known in the sector as ‘Sateliot scenario’ in which low orbit nanosatellite networks are contemplated to provide IoT services.
In this way, Sateliot achieves the support of the industry and the 5G IoT services it provides to telecommunications operators from its constellation will be compatible with the official standard defined in consensus by the main representatives of the sector.
Thus, in the plenary held in the last week, 3GPP has definitively consolidated this roadmap that allows the technically so-called NB-IoT/eMTC standards adapted to non-terrestrial networks (IoT NTN) to be part of Release 17 in June 2021, the final meeting where the solutions will be analyzed in detail to close the technical description of the protocol.
3GPP has endorsed the technical feasibility study (the so-called study item [SI] IoT NTN in 3GPP jargon), as well as the necessary preparations for the approval of the IoT NTN regulatory phase. Thus, the IoT NTN work item led by Mediatek has been supported by Sateliot and multiple industry players who have even made complementary contributions.
The work proposal established very clear objectives that were adapted to the requirements of the regulatory phase, largely as a result of the technical advances and the broad consensus reached in the study phase during the last technical meetings, which allowed completing the feasibility study and submitting the resulting conclusions document -the 3GPP TR 36.763- to the plenary for approval.
Precisely, Sateliot, together with its technological partner Gatehouse, has been one of the companies that have made the most contributions to finalize the feasibility study; conclusions that have been supported by the great voices of the sector, such as the European Space Agency (ESA).
These advances are just further proof that traditional industries such as telecommunications and space are beginning to consider that nanosatellites have a lot to say in the definition of communications standards, not in an exclusive way but complementary to everything that is currently done through terrestrial and non-terrestrial networks.
According to Marco Guadalupi, Sateliot’s CTO, “although this support has been and is the result of long and complex technical work, the approval of the regulatory phase of the IOT-NTN is the definitive endorsement of our project by the sector.”