SATis5 aims to build a large-scale real-time live end-to-end 5G integrated satellite terrestrial network proof-of-concept testbed. The demonstrator testbed implements, deploys and evaluates an integrated satellite-terrestrial 5G network, showcasing the benefits of the satellite integration with the terrestrial infrastructures as part of a comprehensive communication system.

Relevant satellite use cases for 5G to be demonstrated in SATis5 include enhanced mobile broadband (eMBB) and massive machine type communications (mMTC). The SATis5 demonstrator covers live, over-the-air GEO and MEO satellite field demonstrations in addition to laboratory emulations and simulations in a federation of testbeds. The demonstrator is an open federation of resources that can integrate or incorporate additional resources and testbeds in the future providing a more diverse set of experiments and demonstrations.

Project Objectives


(i)         Provides a comprehensive testbed showcasing major technology progress and demonstrating the benefits of satellite technology for the main 5G use cases. The testbed includes live, over the air GEO and MEO satellite connectivity in addition to laboratory emulations and simulations and uses a federation of terrestrial locations. The testbed is an open federation of resources that can incorporate additional locations in the future for addressing new deployment situations and use cases;

(ii)        Highlights the advantages of satellite technology in a range of situations and thus feeds into a roadmap and vision, and supports satellite stakeholders to position themselves in the 5G context;

(iii)       Creates a very substantial impact on the telecommunications industry going beyond the satellite industry. The activity is instrumental and drives the full integration of satellite in 5G through open and standard solutions, facilitated primarily through 3GPP standardization.


The demonstrator showcases for the first time in a live environment the benefits of using satellite technology in 5G enabling a better understanding of the role that satellite could have in 5G systems.

Following a modular architecture, the testbed is designed to be able to incorporate additional remote testbeds within a large scale federation, next to the proposed four nodes, through this being able to naturally extend towards other locations.

Through the harmonisation of SatCom with 5G network features such as virtualisation, network slicing, control/user plane protocols, broadcast/multicast, SATis5 serves and enables the following new business models:

  • Reducing initial CAPEX investment to enter new markets, through very small and dynamic infrastructure deployments;
  • Opening up more backhaul and direct connectivity options in remote areas and towards highly distributed environments;
  • Secure and reliable deployments of highly distributed enterprise networks;
  • Support for on-demand network capacity increase in dense communication areas.
  • Reducing on-going OPEX costs in remote environments;
  • Delivering lower costs per subscriber by targeting small concentrated pockets of users;
  • Enabling new ecosystems where the operator no longer needs to own and run the entire RAN (Radio Access Network).

SATis5 also brings key benefits for the 5G mobile industry:

  • Profitable investment for mobile industry to deploy 5G backhaul to underserved areas;
  • Take up of 5G services in low ARPU markets much faster than previous generations;
  • Seamless accessibility for 5G vertical markets in rural and remote regions;
  • Rapid deployment of highly distributed and secure sparse enterprise networks addressing 5G verticals with global connectivity coverage requirements;
  • Rapid secure and resilient deployment for emergency scenarios;
  • Delivery of very rich multimedia video content at low cost;
  • Rapid “plug and play” new service creation potential in previously difficult geographies.
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