Radio tech firm Sofant Technologies gives good reception to multi-million-pound funding boost

Edinburgh-based radio technology company Sofant Technologies has received a seven-figure boost to support the commercialisation of its low-cost, low-power satellite communications platform.

It has secured €7.3 million (£5.4m) from the UK Space Agency (UKSA) and the European Space Agency (ESA), helping boost availability of the firm’s offering allowing users to connect to the cloud via a new generation of low-latency, super-fast satellite networks.

Sofant says the platform “solves the most pressing power consumption and heat problems faced by the next generation of 5G and satellite communications systems”, enabling such networks to operate with 70 per cent less power, “a significant step forward as 5G adoption accelerates towards 1 billion users by 2022”.

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One of Sofant's radio frequency microelectromechanical systems ‘chips’ that will be used in the antenna. Picture: contributed.
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It also explains that by connecting devices wirelessly via a satellite network, its terminal will reduce the needs for terrestrial infrastructure and make it much easier for people in rural and remote locations to get online.

The firm’s chief executive David Wither said: “We are honoured that the UKSA and the ESA have agreed to support the commercialisation of Sofant’s technology. They have a clear understanding of the technical challenges faced by the satellite communications industry as it seeks to exploit the promise of a new generation of satellite networks.

"They also share our belief that a scalable technology platform which solves power consumption and heat problems in phased array antennas is critical for the future of wireless communications.”

The funding announcement also comes as Sofant gears up for its first Series A funding round, to scale its base in Edinburgh and triple its headcount to 48 over the contract period.

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