Airbus Shares Connectivity Updates at APEX Expo

By Jessica Reed | September 19, 2023
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Airbus picks Safran Passenger Innovations as its Ku-band multi-orbit satcom antenna supplier and confirms two Ku-band MSPs for its HBCplus connectivity solution.

LONG BEACH, Calif. — Airbus has chosen Safran Passenger Innovations as its Ku-band multi-orbit satcom antenna supplier. The company also confirmed Intelsat and Panasonic Avionics Corporation as launch Managed Service Providers (MSPs) for Airbus’s HBCplus connectivity solution. 

“We introduced the HBCplus a year ago,” said Ingo Wuggetzer, Vice President Cabin Marketing at Airbus, during a press briefing at the APEX/IFSA Expo this week. “We already announced two airline customers, and there’s more to come,” he said, adding that they are not ready to share further details just yet. 

At the Aircraft Interiors Expo in June, Airbus revealed the first launch selections for its Airspace Link HBCplus on the A350 from Emirates and Ethiopian Airlines.

Get SAT will provide the Electronically Steerable Antenna (ESA), with Ku-band satcom hardware integration from Safran Passenger Innovations. The ESA is compatible with both GEO and LEO. The antenna will enable simultaneous multi-beam operation for HBCplus Ku-band services, planned to enter into service in 2026.

“We want to provide choice for our customers,” Wuggetzer said. “The next step that we go is for Ku band.”

“I’m very proud to announce today Intelsat and Panasonic as the new MSP providers for Airbus HBCplus solution for Ku band,” he added.

Airbus announced at last year’s APEX Expo that the new GeniusLINK in-flight system would be offered for third-party fleets. The GeniusLINK solution is similar to Airspace Link, a new on-board open ecosystem for commercial aviation.

“As the aircraft OEM, Airbus is looking forward to delivering state-of-the-art built-in aircraft connectivity technology together with Safran Passenger Innovations, integrating Get-SAT’s electronically-steerable antenna to harness multiple satellite constellations,” remarked Maximilian Ruecker, VP Cabin Procurement Seats, IFE and Electronics, in the press release. “In parallel, our expanding catalogue of selected Managed Service Provider partners—now joined by Intelsat and Panasonic Avionics Corporation—will deliver a fantastic customer experience for airlines’ Airbus Family aircraft through lightning fast internet in-flight.”

(Photo: Airbus)

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