SIGFOX joins project to build earth- and satellite-based system for worldwide Internet of Things coverage


SIGFOX announced it is joining the MUSTANG Project launched by Airbus Defence and Space, in partnership with CEA-Leti and SYSMECA. The goal is to provide worldwide, low-data-rate machine-to-machine (M2M) communication using new earth-based and satellite technologies.

The MUSTANG Project is centered on the segment of low-cost exchange of short messages in the fast-growing IoT market, with the aim to develop an innovative hybrid terrestrial/satellite access solution into the Internet of Things (IoT) for seamless and ubiquitous communications across the globe.

Based on new terrestrial and satellite communication technologies, the solution will enable connected devices to communicate on a global scale, offering users a fully integrated and optimised low-cost short message service.

“Seamless and constant Internet of Things connectivity between continents and over the oceans will be a giant step toward realising the IoT’s full potential,” said SIGFOX CEO Ludovic Le Moan. “MUSTANG is a visionary project to achieve this potential, and deliver the cost-effective, low-energy efficiencies that small-message solutions offer globally.”

Thanks to the IoT, people will in the near future be surrounded by hundreds of connected devices that will ease and revolutionise their way of life wherever they are. However, the full potential can only be materialised by adapting networks and, specifically, by offering affordable mobile communications everywhere and at all times.

Satellite links will use a communication protocol to ensure excellent coverage with a small form-factor terminal, while 868 and 915 MHz ISM bands will be used to communicate with the SIGFOX terrestrial network. The dual-mode satellite/terrestrial terminal will enable automatic switching between the two communication channels in response to resource availability in the areas where connected devices are located.

The three-year project will involve the development of the terminal’s modem chipset, the optimisation of communication protocols and the validation of the system through an aircraft application demonstration.

Performance objectives will be achieved primarily through developments in integrated circuit technologies and in enhanced communication protocols for short messages
Supported by the French Government’s Directorate General for Enterprise (DGE), the project will receive public funding through the Future Investments Programme (PIA) run by the General Investment Commission (CGI) and the French ministry in charge of Digital Affairs. The strategic target is to develop an innovative terrestrial/satellite solution to penetrate the worldwide IoT market giving French companies a strategic foothold in this growing application domain.

Diagram of the integrated satellite/terrestrial system architecture

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