Monday, April 17, 2023

Full-service outage on Inmarsat satellite affecting Asia-Pacific region

UPDATE - 4:44 p.m. EDT - Tuesday - April 18

NAVCOM services are "Verified Operational" again on the Inmarsat I-4 F1 satellite.

NAVCOM is a wholly owned subsidiary of John Deere which manufactures GNSS receiver technology and also provides PPP (precise point positioning) correction services.

Classic Aero services aboard the Inmarsat I-4 F1 satellite "has been fully restored, and the transition of Inmarsat‑C from the contingency network back to 4F1 is in progress," according to a Network-Alerts update from m-cramer SatellitenServices, a satellite service company in Germany.

Classic Aero has been the choice for cockpit safety services for 30 years, used by more than 90% of the world’s transoceanic aircraft for communication and surveillance today.

We expect a further update from Inmarsat at 21:00 UTC (5:00 p.m. EDT) on Tuesday.

Background Information

Statement from Inmarsat: "Inmarsat experienced an outage on its I-4 F1 satellite, which provides L-band services for East Asia and the Pacific region, at 21.14 UTC (5:14 p.m. EDT) on Sunday. This resulted in the temporary loss of services from the satellite and the company immediately instigated its recovery procedures.

"Safety services are being prioritized and Inmarsat can confirm that immediately following the incident, it instigated the process to transfer maritime safety services, in line with the IMSO-approved operational process to a contingency satellite. That process was completed successfully.

"Inmarsat Classic Aero recovery has now started and is expected to be operational in a matter of hours. This will be followed by the transfer of Inmarsat-C services from the contingency satellite back to I-4 F1 and then a focus on the restoration of other services.

"All other satellites in the L-band fleet are unaffected by the incident. This includes Inmarsat’s two new L-band satellites  – I-6 F1 and F2 – which will be joined in 2027 by a further three new micro L-band satellites, the Inmarsat-8s, specifically designed to enhance safety service back-up for L-band customers."

m-cramer SatellitenServices

“Inmarsat have advised that due to the nature of the problem and the complexity of the recovery procedure, Inmarsat expect this to be an extended outage. Inmarsat engineers are working to have services restored as soon as possible,” m-cramer said on their website.


"All services in Australia and New Zealand are currently affected," Australian communications company Pivotel reported on their current outages. Pivotel supports more than 100,000 Australian and New Zealand users who travel or operate outside of mobile phone coverage.

Services affected:

  • Inmarsat BGAN M2M
  • Inmarsat Voice/GSPS
  • Isatphone/GSPS
  • BGAN
  • BGAN M2M
  • FleetOne
  • Fleet Broadband
  • IsatDataPro (IDP)
  • Trimble RTX based GPS connections
  • Farmbot Satellite units
  • some John Deere GPS correction systems

Inmarsat has advised that this is being treated as a top priority with key technical resources involved.

The organization plays a big role in providing voice and data communications to the aviation industry. Aircraft safety and communications services are transmitted to and from aircraft globally via satellites orbiting the Earth. Inmarsat I-4 F1 provides services over Asia and the Pacific region.

The satellites deliver voice and data communications to the aircraft cockpit, aircraft systems, and passenger cabin.

Other users of Inmarsat services include ships at sea and mobile users on land working in remote locations outside the range of terrestrial networks across the major landmasses of the world.

FAA Notice to Airmen

Once the Inmarsat service outage was announced, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) released a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) on Monday advising all pilots and commercial traffic of the situation.

The agency advised all aircraft operators and dispatchers that Inmarsat is experiencing an outage at approximately 175 degrees west longitude to points beyond 160 degrees east. The NOTAM instructs pilots to log off their Inmarsat connections and continuously report their position by using vintage high-frequency radio communications. The FAA NOTAM remains in effect until April 24.

Inmarsat I-4 F1

Inmarsat I-4 F1 was built by Europe-based EADS Astrium using a Eurostar E2000 bus. Launched in March 2005, the 13,000-pound satellite was designed for a life of 13 years. The satellite was launched into geosynchronous orbit by an Atlas V rocket. It is currently located at 143.5 degrees East on the Earth’s equator.

No comments: