The Nigerian Communications Satellite Limited plans to provide Global Positioning Services to airline operators and other commercial entities, including the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation.
Towards the provision of this service, the L-Band in the Nigerian Communications Satellite, NigComSat-1R, has been activated and testing of the services will be carried out in the first quarter of 2019.
The Minister of Communications, Mr Adebayo Shittu, gave this indication at the 15th International Telecommunications Union Resolution 609 Consultation Meeting and Radio-navigation Satellite Service Symposium in Abuja on Tuesday.
The minister said the test run would be carried out with aircraft belonging to the Nigerian Air Force before it would be deployed in the civil aviation sector.According to Shittu, the navigational services to be offered by NigComSat will serve as additional sources of revenue for the government as it stretches its quest for the diversification of the economy.
Our correspondent learnt that the management of NigComSat Limited was also in discussion with the NNPC for the deployment of the L-Band geo-positioning services for monitoring of pipelines belonging to the national oil firm.
Shittu stated, “In line with the Economy Recovery and Growth Plan of this administration, the government has been in the vanguard for the diversification of the economy through robust policies and promotion of services cum technologies such as Radio Navigation Satellite System.
“We are fully in support of back-up satellite systems for NigComSat’s robust service delivery, continuity and expansion in areas and sectors that cover broadcasting, navigation, telecommunications services etc.
“In collaboration with our partners, we shall commence test-bed trials, characterisation and pilot demonstration by the first quarter of next year, 2019, using selected Nigerian Air Force aircraft and validation by the Agency for Aerial Navigation in Africa and Madagascar before deployment in the civil aviation sector.”
Speaking at the event, Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, NigComSat Limited, Abimbola Alale, said the company was driven by the vision to provide ubiquitous connectivity and communication satellite solutions through innovation.
She stated, “NigComSat is responsible for managing and operating geostationary communications satellites.”
“We currently have NigComSat-1R in geostationary orbit. NigComSat-1R has Quad-band (Ku, Ka, C and L bands) for telecommunications, broadcast and navigation overlay services.”
She added that the Ground Station Complex in Abuja was fully equipped with various facilities, including the Satellite Control Centre, Network Operations Centre, Direct-to-Home Centre, Broadband Network Service Centre, Innovation and Development Centre and Nigerian Satellite Augmentation System programme.