Stratospheric Platforms has created a HAP (High Altitude Platform) with Deutsche Telekom’s backing that can give continuous 5G connectivity to consumer smart phones across areas as large as 140km while also providing direct internet connectivity to homes.
It has suggested to the DCMS a system that would provide complete coverage of the United Kingdom using a small fleet of planes based at Prestwick Airport.
The coverage capabilities is especially well adapted to Scotland’s difficult terrain.
The Stratomast HAP from SPL provides a wide-area, high-data-rate, and adaptable telecoms solution. A single Stratomast system acts as a network of masts in the sky, providing a low-cost means of ensuring 100 percent geographic connection across Scotland.
Each aircraft can concurrently supply home broadband services and 4G/5G mobile phone coverage to residences in rural and isolated places.
Each Stratomast HAP is equipped with a huge high-power telecommunications system with a range of up to 15,000 kilometers.
A zero-emission hydrogen power system powers the aircraft and payload. A fleet of 21 aircraft capable of providing 100 percent coverage over Scotland would require only 8 offshore wind turbines to generate the power required to create Hydrogen from sea water and provide a year-round service with a 99.9% availability.
The Stratomast system serves isolated and rural areas by providing a communications service that requires either regular mobile phones for mobile connectivity or a low-cost, low-power MiFi device (around £100) for home internet services.
The method eliminates the need for pricey fiber optic cables stretched across the seabed to reach island or rural towns and does not require any ugly new equipment or towers on the ground.
Furthermore, rural enterprises such as farming can improve their productivity by being able to use IoT devices anywhere and access big data; tourism can benefit from high-speed connectivity; and fishermen can benefit from mobile phone voice and high-speed data coverage that extends far out to sea.
The data rates given by the Stratomast HAP are substantially higher than those provided by satellites, and there is no requirement for a satellite ground station because this is essentially a telecommunications mast in the sky.
Operating from a Scottish airfield such as Prestwick, the company aims to provide full geographic ubiquitous telecommunications coverage, not just to Scotland, but to the entire UK and large parts of Northern Europe, cementing Scotland as the technical leader in telecommunications, high altitude platforms, and hydrogen aircraft for the foreseeable future.
Prestwick’s expansion as a UK Space Port and the possibility to locate large manufacturing and service activities at the airport, building on Prestwick’s internationally recognized aerospace manufacturing and Air traffic Management skills, are both welcomed by Stratospheric Platforms.