MTN-CCN2 Mobile Tracking Needs – Contract Change Notice 2

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In the main contract of this study "Mobile Tracking Needs", a measurement database was developed. The database was populated with measurement segments of the motion dynamics of different vehicles/vessels on different terrain types/sea conditions for the land mobile and the maritime environments. In the context of this activity, more measurements are performed to make the database rich and comprehensive. The measurements are then statistically analyzed defining main clusters of datasets. This classification process leads to the definition of main data classes, e.g. class A and class B. For each of these classes a representative standard motion profile is selected. The motion profiles are used as benchmark for testing Satellite Communications On-The-Move (SOTM) terminals. The motion profiles are included in the GVF-105 standard SOTM test recommendations. The test procedures in the GVF-105 document including the proposed motion profiles are validated in a comprehensive type approval with a commercial SOTM terminal from the maritime market sector. The type approval is performed at the Fraunhofer IIS Facility for Over-the-air Research and Testing (FORTE) in Ilmenau, Germany.


During the project data gathering campaigns is performed. Since the measurements are planned to augment the database, specific terrain types and sea conditions are sought. This makes the measurement campaigns difficult in planning. For example, a stormy sea or a hurricane is not a matter of everyday. The MTN database was necessary for European SOTM manufacturers to reduce their development cost when targeting certain type of application environment.


The definition of standard motion profiles for testing SOTM terminals is essential but missing. Standard motion profiles provide a fair basis for comparing the performance of different SOTM terminals. So far it is left to the vendor to perform the tests without specifying the environment in terms of the motion conditions. However a terminal with well performing tracking unit could be tested on a rough terrain or in tough sea conditions in which it fails to meet the required pointing regulations. Another poor performing terminal may be tested on a relatively easier motion profile on which it succeeds to meet the pointing requirements and is approved accordingly.


The measurement database and the standard motion profiles are available for SOTM market contributors from the ESA member states including satellite operators, system integrators, Value Added Resellers (VAR) and manufacturers. For non-EU members, the availability is restricted to the standard motion profiles.

System Architecture

The project leads to the definition of standard motion profiles which are necessary for testing SOTM products. The standard motion profiles are included in the GVF-105 standard testing recommendations and are widely accepted by different contributors in the SOTM market. The type approval is to be performed using the proposed motion profiles either in a laboratory environment such as the Fraunhofer IIS Facility for Over-the-air Research and Testing (FORTE) or in a free-field. In the former, the profiles can be replayed using motion emulators, however, in the latter the used motion track has to match the defined standard profiles at least in terms of statistics.


In a first step and in order to enrich the measurement database, more measurements are conducted during this activity. The new measurements cover both environments: land mobile and maritime. The new measurements consolidate the diversity of measurement conditions and help to have a concrete statistical basis for further evaluations.  A statistical classification of the complete set of measurements is then applied. This leads to the selection of representative measurement segments for each environment (land mobile and maritime). The selected segments are the target standard motion profiles which are used to test the performance of SOTM terminals. The acceptance of the proposed standard motion profiles in the SOTM community is tested by presenting them to the GVF-MRA group. The GVF-MRA group includes not only the major satellite operators ,e.g. Eutelsat, Intelsat, Inmarsat, Hispasat, Asiasat, etc. but also SOTM manufactures from all over the world. The definition of the standard motion profiles is then added to the GVF-105 type approval guidelines. As a step to validate the practical applicability of the motion profiles, a complete type approval for a commercial SOTM antenna according to the modified GVF-105 guidelines and the EUTELSAT specifications is performed by Fraunhofer IIS, and witnessed by GVF, at the Facility for Over-the-air Research and Testing FORTE in Ilmenau, Germany

Current status

Project has been completed. All deliverables were submitted to ESA. Standard motion profiles were developed for the environments Land mobile and Maritime. However, there is a huge demand of such tracking units in the aeronautic as well as train environment. Here the satellite operators as well as the industry developing such systems see a strong need for such standard test profiles too. Therefore, the contract change notice CCN3 of the project Mobile Tracking Needs (MTN) is planned to close this gap. As an authorized test entity for several satellite operators as well as for the Global VSAT Forum (GVF) the Fraunhofer IIS with its worldwide unique test facility (FROTE) would also strongly benefit for further research as well as for supporting European industry to develop competitive systems.

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