Updated on June 19, 2024


Created on August 25, 2018

Global Xpress

Inmarsat's Global Xpress is a four Inmarsat-5 satellite constellation.

Developed By
  1. Inmarsat
Tested By
  • Advanced Satellite Communications(ASC)
  • Boeing
  • Gilat
  • Honeywell Aerospace
  • Hughes
  • iDirect Government Technologies
  • Inmarsat Government
  • ViaSat
Content Partners


Product Description

Inmarsat’s Global Xpress is a four Inmarsat-5 satellite network. Inmarsat-5 (I-5) satellites operate at Ka-band in the range of 20–30 GHz. Each Inmarsat-5 carries a payload of 89 small Ka-band beams to provide global Ka-band spot coverage. In addition each satellite carries six fully steerable beams that can be pointed at commercial or government traffic hotspots. According to Inmarsat, Global Xpress delivers download speeds in excess of 60 Mbit/s to a 60 cm dish. Latency has been tested as being approximately 600ms. Inmarsat-5 F1 covers Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia, F2 covers North America, South America and the Atlantic Ocean and F3 covers the Pacific Ocean.

Target SDGs

SDG 9: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure

SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth

Target Users (Target Impact Group)

Community, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises, Public Sector Agencies, NGOs

Distributors / Implementing Organizations

Some distributors are: Cobham, DataPath, Honeywell, Intellian, JRC, Kymeta, Paradigm Communications, L-3 GCS and many other partners/distributors according to their web page.

Competitive Landscape

Direct competitors include O3b Networks.

Manufacturing/Building Method

The Inmarsat-5 (I-5) satellites are based on Boeing's 702HP spacecraft platform, a family of communication satellite bus designed and manufactured by the Boeing Satellite Development Center. It covers satellites massing from 1,500 kg (3,300 lb) to 6,100 kg (13,400 lb) with power outputs from 3 to 18 kW and can carry more than 100 high-power transponders. The baseline Boeing 702 is compatible with several orbital launch systems, including Atlas V, Ariane 5, Delta IV, Falcon 9, Proton, and Sea Launch operated Zenit 3SL.

Intellectural Property Type

Select Type

User Provision Model

Users need to contact Global Xpress representatives to agree service characteristics, implementation process and support terms.

Distributions to Date Status


Type of service

K-band satellite service.

Telecommunication service required

Satellite reception terminals (included with service)

Fixed network connection required (Y/N)


Additional device required

Device for internet connectivity (Computer, tablet, smartphone)

Two way communication (Y/N)


Battery life (hours)


Network capacity

Depending on services contracted.

Power requirements

Depending on terminal and services contracted.

Average packet loss



Internet service in general.

Design Specifications

The system includes the space segment and ground segment to provide geo-visible earth connectivity. The space segment provides two primary communications payloads for servicing users: the Global Service Beam (GSB) Payload and the High Capacity Payload (HCP). The ground segment provides SASs and a multiprotocol label switching (MPLS) infrastructure that interconnects all Inmarsat L-band and Ka-band resources. The ground segment also provides secure enclaves for supporting Customer-specific equipment and services. Management and status of all interfaces is accomplished through available Web-Based User Interface (WebUI) and machine-to-machine (M2M) interfaces. Global Xpress meets critical Information Assurance requirements to include US Department of Defense Instruction (DoDI) 8500.2, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Special Publication (SP) 800-53, and the International Organization for Standardization / International Electrotechnical Commission (ISO/IEC) 27000 Information Security Management Systems (ISMS) standards. To provide even greater levels of assurance, GX Satellite Access Stations (SASs) are located in NATO and “Five Eyes” countries (Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States).

Product Schematics

Technical Support

There is a technical support site, a FAQ site and a contact site for further enquires and information.

Replacement Components

Yes. Inmersat's Global Xpress contact site is available for further enquires and information.


15 years

Manufacturer Specified Performance Parameters

Global Xpress provides mobile broadband up to 50Mbps to a 60cm stabilized antenna using Ka-band fixed spot beam services. Higher throughputs can be achieved through different terminal and antenna configurations. Additional capacity, supporting hundreds of Mbps ideal for AISR and multi-Gbps point-to-point links, is available using the steerable spot beam services.

Vetted Performance Status

In May 2017, Inmarsat and Thales executed a series of tests that successfully demonstrated communications using Thales’ System 21 on Inmarsat’s Global Xpress (GX) high-capacity steerable antennas. These tests illustrate the ability of Thales’s System 21 modem to support resilient, protected and secure, high-data-rate connectivity for mission-critical military and government users. Recent over-the-air tests, held in January 2017, were conducted by Inmarsat with VT iDirect using iDirect’s next-generation DVB-S2X technology. During the tests, Inmarsat achieved a forward channel throughput rate of 330 Mbps over a live Inmarsat GX satellite in orbit. Inmarsat is providing its Global Xpress (GX) satellite service to the Australian Border Force. Eight maritime vessels have early in 2017 been fitted with new Cobra-class satellite communications terminals. The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) has awarded Comsat a contract to support communication activities on the African continent with Inmarsat’s Global Xpress Satcom as a Service capability.



Complementary Technical Systems

Global Xpress provides data and voice connection services in a backbone-to-edge architecture. Users need to provide last mile connectivity infrastructure and services to end-users.

Academic Research and References

Peter Hadinger. “Inmarsat Global Xpress The Design, Implementation, and Activation of a Global Ka-Band Network“, 33rd AIAA International Communications Satellite Systems Conference and Exhibition, International Communications Satellite Systems Conferences (ICSSC), (AIAA 2015-4303) https://doi.org/10.2514/6.2015-4303

Alan, H. The future of next generation satellite broadband communications services: An operator’s view. IEEE

Jorn Christensen. “ITU Regulations for Ka-band Satellite Networks“, 30th AIAA International Communications Satellite System Conference (ICSSC), International Communications Satellite Systems Conferences (ICSSC), https://doi.org/10.2514/6.2012-15179

“Home – Www.Cobham.Com.” n.d. Cobham.Com. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://www.cobham.com/

“Home.” 2021. DataPath. November 18, 2021. https://datapath.com/

“Home.” n.d. Honeywell.Com. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://aerospace.honeywell.com

“Intellian – Empowering Connectivity.” n.d. Intellian. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://www.intelliantech.com/en/home

“HOME?JRC?Japan Radio Co.,Ltd.?.” n.d. Japan Radio Co.,Ltd. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://www.jrc.co.jp/en/

“Kymeta Corp – Making Mobile Global.” 2022. Kymeta Corp. February 14, 2022. https://www.kymetacorp.com/

“The World’s Most Advanced Satcom Made Simple.” n.d. Paradigm. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://www.paracomm.co.uk/

“HawkeyeTM III Lite VSAT.” n.d. L3Harris® Fast. Forward. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://www.l3harris.com/all-capabilities/hawkeye-iii-lite

“Contact.” n.d. Inmarsat Corporate Website. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://www.inmarsat.com/en/support-and-info/contact.html

Intelsat Brand Short 2024. 2024. https://www.intelsat.com/

“Global Communications.” n.d. Viasat.Com. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://www.viasat.com/

“Leading Satellite Operator.” n.d. Eutelsat.Com. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://www.eutelsat.com/en/home.html

“Goal 9.” n.d. Sdgs.Un.Org. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://sdgs.un.org/goals/goal9

“Boeing Satellites.” n.d. Boeing.Com. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://www.boeing.com/space/boeing-satellites

“Inmarsat.” n.d. Inmarsat Corporate Website. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://www.inmarsat.com/en/index.html

“Contact.” n.d. Inmarsat Corporate Website. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://www.inmarsat.com/en/support-and-info/contact.html

“Support.” n.d. Inmarsat Corporate Website. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://www.inmarsat.com/en/support-and-info/support.html

“Thales and Inmarsat Successfully Conclude Tests Demonstrating Resilient Communications Using System 21 Modem over Global Xpress High-Capacity Steerable Antennas.” n.d. Thales Group. Accessed June 19, 2024. https://www.thalesgroup.com/en/worldwide/defence/press-release/thales-and-inmarsat-successfully-conclude-tests-demonstrating

Compliance with regulations

Global Xpress is a project and private initiative part of Inmarsat company. All their services are provided through a contract that includes terms and conditions among other conditions/compromises.

Evaluation methods

For been a connectivity service, important parameters are bandwidth, packet loss, latency and signal degradation due to natural phenomena such as rains.

Other Information

There is a YouTube Channel available with further information.

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