NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – (April 6, 2010) – International Communications Group (ICG) and Cobham Antenna Systems announced today that the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has granted Supplemental Type Certification (STC) for Sora, a product that offers both Iridium and Swift Broadband (SBB) voice and data services worldwide. The first Sora system was recently installed on a Gulfstream G200. Gulfstream, Cobham and ICG cooperated to obtain the STC for the system providing the basis for installation on a variety of business jets.
ICG and Cobham jointly developed the Sora package and announced it at the National Business Aviation Association Annual Meeting & Convention last November. Sora, which is Japanese for “Sky,” integrates ICG’s NxtLink 220A Iridium system and NxtMail Server with a Cobham Inmarsat SBB terminal. This combination will enable WiFi devices such as Blackberries, iPhones and personal computers to operate on the high speed SBB channel, while the cabin and crew communicate using Iridium’s worldwide voice. Additionally, the flight crew can utilize a dedicated Iridium channel for AFIS/ACARS safety messaging and also have the use of a priority voice channel for air traffic management and flight operations personnel.
“Now that the first installation of Sora has been completed, and an STC with PMA have been secured, the project moves from development status to a full production program,” said Jeff Saucedo, ICG’s vice president of OEM Sales. “We can begin delivering hardware to customers as soon as their aircraft can be scheduled into an installation facility. Sora not only offers exceptional versatility, but it is also the smallest, and lightest, Iridium/Swift Broadband combination in the industry.”
“Having an STC is an important benefit to both customers and installation facilities, because it expedites the installation and certification process,” added Saucedo. “But of even greater interest is the value that Sora offers. It’s priced at around $150,000 MSRP, and increases the productivity, convenience, flexibility and safety of flight operations through reliable, redundant communication options. The installation on a G200 is just the first of an expansive list of aircraft for which it is extremely well-suited.”
A fully certified Sora system will be available for delivery to aircraft manufacturers in May 2010. Deliveries to ICG dealers will commence shortly thereafter.
About ICG (www.icg.aero)
International Communications Group, Inc. (ICG) of Newport News, Va. is a recognized leader within the aerospace industry in the development and manufacture of aeronautical communications systems and solutions for the General Aviation and Air Transport industries. ICG’s products provide satellite-based global voice and data telecommunications services for both cabin requirements and flight deck operations. Implementation of ICG avionics provides a comprehensive communications solution that can be customized for any size airframe or application. Products include: CTU systems, corded and cordless handsets, single- and multi-channel Sat-Com systems and data management devices. Markets for ICG products are the aerospace, military and maritime industries. ICG, a major Iridium value-added manufacturer (VAM) and value-added reseller (VAR), has developed a wide range of Iridium-based solutions and products for mobile satellite communications applications. ICG is an approved FAA manufacturing facility and operates an FAA and EASA approved repair station.
About Cobham (www.cobham.com)
Cobham’s products and services have been at the heart of sophisticated military and civil systems for more than 70 years, keeping people safe, improving communications, and enhancing the capability of land, sea, air and space platforms. The Company has four divisions employing more than 12,000 people on five continents, with customers and partners in over 100 countries. Cobham SATCOM is a leader in mobile satellite communications technology and interoperability solutions for commercial and governmental mobile broadband satellite communications. The core expertise of the business is in automated satellite acquisition and tracking equipment, antennas and communications services for military and government agencies such as homeland security and law enforcement. Commercial groups such as oil and gas companies, news organizations, construction companies and medical organizations also benefit from Cobham SATCOM’s tele-medicine, interactive distance learning and broadband internet access for applications such as video conferencing, radio over satellite over IP, voice over satellite and over IP.