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ST Electronics to develop commercial satellite system with SatixFy UK

ST Engineering's electronics arm, ST Electronics, announced it has signed an agreement with SatixFy UK to create a joint venture company (JVCo), aimed at developing a satellite antenna system to deliver "enhanced" in-flight connectivity for commercial aviation.

ST Electronics will invest US$20 million for a 49 per cent stake in the JV, with the remaining 51 per cent controlled by SatixFy UK, which describes itself as a provider of baseband modem and electronically steerable antenna chips, products and solutions, and is headquartered in Israel.

In a media statement, ST Engineering said the concept which the JVCo will build on uses SatixFy UK's Digital Beam Forming technology.

The technology will enable "seamless and simultaneous communications with multiple satellites, at higher performance, lower SWAP (size, weight and power) and significantly lower cost than existing solutions".

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"In addition to providing enhanced broadband connectivity experience for in-flight passengers, the technology will improve operational efficiencies of commercial and business airline operators," ST Engineering said in the statement.

The JVCo will be headquartered in the UK, and according to ST Electronics, is part of the group's strategy to "enhance its global access to the emerging high growth commercial aviation connectivity market".

Ravinder Singh, ST Electronics' president, said the JV will help enhance the group's satellite communications business.

"We believe this innovative technology has the potential to generate tremendous value for the growing worldwide aviation connectivity market," Mr Singh said.

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