Fri. Feb 23rd, 2024
Iridium Introduces Project Stardust for Seamless D2D Communication

Iridium Communications has unveiled Project Stardust, its latest venture in the direct-to-device (D2D) sector. This innovative project leverages Iridium’s existing satellite network to provide both proprietary and standardised D2D and Internet of Things (IoT) services.

Recognizing the importance of industry-wide standards, Iridium’s move comes after their previous partnership with Qualcomm on Snapdragon Satellite was canceled due to manufacturers’ preference for standards-based D2D solutions. Project Stardust is Iridium’s response to address the evolving demands of the market.

Set to integrate terrestrial and non-terrestrial networks through Narrowband-Internet of Things (NB-IoT) over Non-Terrestrial Network (NB-NTN) service, Project Stardust aligns with 3GPP Release 17 for 5G. As per 3GPP predictions, commercially available handheld devices compatible with NTN are expected to become available in the near future.

The testing of Iridium’s Project Stardust service is scheduled to begin in 2025, with commercial deployment planned for 2026. This service aims to deliver 5G NTN messaging and SOS capabilities to a wide range of devices, including smartphones, tablets, cars, and various consumer applications.

Project Stardust holds tremendous potential to enable global 5G access. By utilizing high-altitude platforms and satellite constellations, both in low earth orbit (LEO) and geosynchronous orbit (GEO), this initiative extends cellular coverage to areas where traditional terrestrial networks face limitations, including remote and extreme geographies. With NB-IoT over NTN, basic 5G access can be extended on a global scale, facilitating low data-rate applications, such as transmitting data from sensors or sending text messages from IoT devices and smartphones.

Iridium’s Project Stardust is a significant step forward in enhancing D2D communication and IoT services. By combining proprietary and standardized approaches, this initiative paves the way for seamless connectivity and opens doors to a wide range of possibilities in the world of satellite-based communication.

Frequently Asked Questions: Project Stardust

1. What is Project Stardust?
Project Stardust is Iridium Communications’ latest venture in the direct-to-device (D2D) sector. It leverages Iridium’s existing satellite network to provide both proprietary and standardized D2D and Internet of Things (IoT) services.

2. Why was Project Stardust developed?
Project Stardust was developed in response to the evolving demands of the market and the preference for standards-based D2D solutions. Iridium’s previous partnership with Qualcomm on Snapdragon Satellite was canceled due to manufacturers’ preference for standardized solutions.

3. How does Project Stardust integrate terrestrial and non-terrestrial networks?
Project Stardust integrates terrestrial and non-terrestrial networks through Narrowband-Internet of Things (NB-IoT) over Non-Terrestrial Network (NB-NTN) service. It aligns with 3GPP Release 17 for 5G, allowing for the integration of handheld devices compatible with NTN.

4. When will the testing and commercial deployment of Project Stardust begin?
The testing of Project Stardust is scheduled to begin in 2025, with commercial deployment planned for 2026.

5. What capabilities does Project Stardust aim to deliver?
Project Stardust aims to deliver 5G NTN messaging and SOS capabilities to a wide range of devices, including smartphones, tablets, cars, and various consumer applications.

6. What is the potential impact of Project Stardust?
Project Stardust has the potential to enable global 5G access by extending cellular coverage to areas where traditional terrestrial networks face limitations. By utilizing high-altitude platforms and satellite constellations, it can facilitate low data-rate applications and seamless connectivity on a global scale.

Key Terms and Definitions:
– Direct-to-device (D2D): Refers to communication services that provide connectivity directly to devices without the need for intermediaries.
– Internet of Things (IoT): Refers to the network of interconnected physical devices, vehicles, and other objects embedded with sensors, software, and network connectivity that enables them to collect and exchange data.
– Narrowband-Internet of Things (NB-IoT): A Low Power Wide Area Network (LPWAN) technology that enables secure and reliable communication between a wide range of devices. It is optimized for low data rate and low power consumption applications.
– Non-Terrestrial Network (NTN): Communication networks that are not based on traditional terrestrial infrastructure, such as satellite networks.
– 5G: The fifth generation of wireless technology that promises faster speeds, lower latency, and greater connectivity for various devices and applications.

Suggested Related Links:
Iridium Communications
3GPP