The AeroMax electronically steered array shown in an industry-standard radome. Photo: NXT Communications

NXT Communications, a new mobile connectivity company in Atlanta, announced today that it has completed design of a low-cost, flat-panel satellite antenna for the commercial and defense aviation markets. Additionally, NXT Communications named Carl Novello as its CTO.

Novello was the former VP of Solutions for Kymeta, and VP of Product at Intellian —where he led the tri-band Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT) antenna development.

NXTCOMM’s high-capacity, flat panel satellite antenna aims to provide greater performance at lower price points. The design uses standard Printed Circuit Board (PCB) manufacturing technology with commercial off-the-shelf components and a unique modular sub array topology scalable to any form factor.

Leveraging advancements in RF and semi-conductor packaging and manufacturing technology, the AeroMax antenna "optimizes a highly integrated silicon-based chipset and sub-array design, which serves as the building block for a portfolio of next-generation, lower-cost commercial satellite antennas," according to the antenna manufacturer. The core aperture that drives the antenna has been flight tested and having been deployed in several defense aviation and ISR applications, the company said.

“AeroMax fills a critical broadband need facing airlines and operators as they resume flights in a changed connectivity environment,” says Dave Horton, co-founder and CEO of NXTCOMM and a 20-year aviation IFC and satcom veteran. “Unlike traditional mechanically steered antenna designs, our antennas are modular and easily mass producible.”

Global Connected Aircraft Podcast logo Want to hear more on aircraft connectivity applications? Check out the Global Connected Aircraft Podcast, where Avionics editor-in-chief Woodrow Bellamy III interviews airlines and industry influencers on how they're applying connectivity solutions.

The company plans to conduct over-the-air testing later this year, with its AeroMax antenna low-rate initial production (LRIP) projected to become available in early 2021. NXTCOMM's has a full-scale production facility in metro Atlanta, as well as Part 145 facilities in Georgia.

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  • Aviation Cert guy

    Nice to see the electronically steered arrays starting to make it to the commercial world. It will make installations so very much easier than the mechanically steered antennas we deal with now.