ViaSat Inc. will be building AU$280 million worth of satellite dishes, infrastructure, and equipment for Australia’s planned national broadband network.
Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced the deal in Townsville, where ViaSat will be building a fixed wireless satellite network for NBN Co. in the near future.
ViaSat has been contracted to build 13.5 metre-wide satellite antennas at 10 planned Australian satellite teleports that will be owned and operated by the NBN. The Carlsbad, California-based satellite company will also construct infrastructure and outfit NBN data centers with technical ground equipment to support satellite services.
ViaSat will also provide satellite dishes for up to 200,000 isolated Australian households and businesses that will access the network for fast, affordable, and reliable satellite broadband services.
Another US firm, Space Systems/Loral, has been commissioned by NBN to build a pair of Ka-band satellites for the planned broadband network. The satellites are intended for separate 2015 launches with a six-month interval. They will provide high-speed broadband services for 680,000 Australians who live in remote areas of the country.
With ViaSat’s help, NBN intends to ensure that a total of 4% of the Australian population will be able to enjoy download speeds of up to 12mbps through fixed wireless satellite broadband networks.