Status date

The objectives of the INSPIRE Trial are:

  1. To validate the assumptions behind, and the results arising from, the current initiatives addressing the Digital Divide.
  2. To evaluate the effectiveness of DVB-RCS in combination with wireless 802.11b/g equipment to deliver cost effective broadband Internet services to residential and business users located in non-metropolitan areas.
  3. To validate the commercial assumptions underpinning the business case for next generation satellites foreseen to provide dedicated capacity for broadband services.

The key issues to be addressed in INSPIRE include:

  1. The flexibility in terms of the service types and characteristics that can be delivered;
  2. The transformation of satellite communications from a technology to an operational service proposition;
  3. Cost - of satellite bandwidth and end user terminals;

The main benefits from INSPIRE will be:

  1. Confirmation of the assumptions and results from current Digital Divide initiatives.
  2. Expanded demonstration of the utility of DVB-RCS / WiFi technology in delivering advanced broadband services to non-metropolitan areas.
  3. A firm basis for commercialisation of the technology.

INSPIRE will achieve its objectives through the development of a fully-operational, large scale DVB-RCS / WiFi network, providing service for up to 6000 users in two trial regions in the UK.

The main elements of the architecture are shown in the diagram below.

click for larger image


The project is divided into three Phases:

  • Phase 1:
    Design and Standards Specification; in which the System Development is completed and Operational Standards Specifications are drawn up.
  • Phase 2:
    Infrastructure Implementation and Initial Deployment; which involves the procurement and installation of a hub, the integration of the WiPoP and customer premises equipment and the installation of 100 WiPoPs and approx. 1,000 CPEs.
  • Phase 3:
    Operations and Evaluation; in which further WiPoPs and CPEs are deployed and full operations commenced.
Current status

The project started in February 2005. Phase 1 was completed in September 2005. During Phase 2, which has been completed in Oct 2006:

  • Procurements have been finalized,
  • The DVB-RCS Hub has been put into operation,
  • The first batch of 100 terminals has been installed,
  • Operations have started with over 1000 users on line,
  • Developments for support for end-to-end QoS and management have been completed,
  • A number of applications have been developed, including VoIP, multimedia streaming and community channel.

Two major milestones have been achieved:

  • The Hub Acceptance Review, and
  • The Pilot Qualification Review.

The third phase is being initiated. More information and the commercial service offering can be found on the Avanti website.