INDONESIA: In the near future, the Republic of Indonesia Satellite, known as Satria-1, is set to play a crucial role in providing internet access to remote areas across the country.
Launched on 18 June this year, from Cape Canaveral, Florida, United States, aboard SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket, Satria-1 has successfully positioned itself at the orbital slot of 146 degrees East Longitude, approximately 36 thousand kilometres above Papua.
During a 145-day Electric Orbit Raising (EOR) process, Satria-1 transitioned from satellite separation from its launch vehicle to reaching its designated orbital slot.
Upon reaching this milestone, a series of trials were conducted to optimize the internet service provided by Satria-1.
Expected to commence operations in December 2023, the satellite holds an ambitious goal of bridging the digital divide in Indonesia—an archipelagic nation facing challenges in internet accessibility.
Sofyan Jalil, the President Commissioner of the Pasifik Satelit Nusantara (PSN) Group, emphasized the significance of the successful launch, stating that it would strengthen the technological, informational, and communication infrastructure within the country.
This achievement is particularly crucial in addressing the internet access gap in Indonesia, given its unique archipelagic geography.
The Main Director of PSN, Adi Rahman Adiwoso, highlighted the strategic importance of Satria-1 as the initial phase in a series aimed at providing internet services to remote areas.
Bolster nationwide internet accessibility in Indonesia
Post-launch, the focus is on ensuring the proper functioning of the satellite to support the government’s efforts in delivering optimal internet services to the Indonesian populace.
Satria-1 is distinguished as Indonesia’s first satellite utilizing Very High Throughput Satellite (VHTS) technology, operating in the Ka-band frequency and boasting 116 Spot Beams.
With a capacity of 150 Gbps, the satellite is the largest of its kind in Asia and the fifth-largest globally.
This massive capacity can cater to internet access for 37 thousand points, offering speeds of up to 5 Mbps.
Expected to provide faster internet connections and broader coverage for 15 years, the 4.6-ton Satria-1 is designed to service schools, health centres, regional government offices, as well as military and police installations in frontier, underdeveloped, and outermost (3T) areas lacking base transceiver station (BTS) infrastructure.
To facilitate the operation of Satria-1, 11 ground stations or gateways have been strategically deployed in locations such as Cikarang, Batam, Banjarmasin, Tarakan, Pontianak, Kupang, Ambon, Manado, Manokwari, Timika, and Jayapura.
The Cikarang Gateway, in particular, serves as the Primary Satellite Control Center Station and Network Operation Control.
Recognized as a national strategic project by Presidential Regulation Number 56 of 2018, the procurement of the Satria-1 project was executed through the Government Cooperation with Business Entities (KPBU) scheme.
The Telecommunications and Information Accessibility Agency of the Ministry of Communication and Information (Bakti Kominfo), as the Person in Charge of the Cooperation Project (PJPK), oversaw the procurement tender process, ultimately selecting the PT Pasifik Satelit Nusantara (PSN) Consortium as the auction winner on 26 April 2019.
Subsequently, the PSN consortium established an Implementing Business Entity (BUP) named PT Satelit Nusantara Tiga (SNT), which is actively engaged in the realization of the Satria-1 project.