Seeing into the future of your sync network

Ulrich Kohn
Earth with virtual computer

The demand for exceptionally precise timing is a core component of virtually all infrastructure, from wired and wireless communications to secure defense and banking networks. And when timing sources fall short, there are serious repercussions for network operations.

In recent years, Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) receivers have emerged as the key source of timing. However, GNSS-based synchronization is fallible and one of the major limitations is that it’s only efficient when satellite receivers have a clear sky view. Unsurprisingly, network outages are often traced back to line-of-sight problems with GNSS receivers and antennas. 

GNSS availability at risk

The environment around antennas is constantly changing and new build construction, tree growth and rooftop installations can all impact reception. Even partial obstruction of the sky view increases the probability of synchronization issues, potentially impacting operational efficiency or causing network downtime. 

Another significant limitation of GNSS is that performance assurance is entirely reactive, with countermeasures triggered only when problems are detected. Correctly locating and diagnosing an issue with satellite receivers is also far from easy, making the whole process costly for the operator as well as inconvenient for the end user.

What today’s synchronization network operators require is the power to take immediate or even preemptive action. They need a way to see into the future – a tool that can analyze long-term patterns, draw on data from a wide range of infrastructures and intelligently predict where vulnerabilities are likely to occur before any negative impact is felt.

A clear view

That’s why we created our SatAware™ service. Specifically designed to make GNSS-dependent networks radically more reliable, efficient and cheaper to maintain, SatAware™ provides a toolkit for monitoring GNSS antennas and alerting operators to existing and potential environmental issues. 

With this AI-powered ADVA-hosted service, network operators can have full visibility of GNSS receiver site conditions without the effort and expense of physical onsite visits. SatAware™ automatically and non-intrusively generates new site surveys remotely each day, providing operators with invaluable, real-time environmental reports. With continuously collected measurement data, 3D maps of the antenna environment are constructed and the AI model then effortlessly scans the map highlighting blind spots indicative of obstructed sky views.

Predictive ML- algorithm analyzing antenna spectrogram

Inevitably, when site conditions do change, our smart solution detects and highlights the problem. Leveraging the benefits of AI analytics alleviates the need for operators to manually inspect their own antennas. Intelligent analytics can be solely relied upon to generate actionable insights, with the power to trigger countermeasures before services are affected or outages occur. 

Intelligence and expertise

There’s no doubt that SatAware™ is a unique tool. It also couldn’t be easier to harness. All that’s required is a lightweight data collection software engine deployed at the end-customers data communication network (DCN) that securely shares information on all standard satellite receivers with the SatAware™ data pool. Info is processed by our SatAware™ analysis tools in order to deliver detailed real-time status of individual sites. A clear and transparent web-based graphical user interface visualizes reception quality and identifies potential blind spots. Our intelligent algorithms then detect critical trends and identify the need for actions, such as sites requiring readjustment of antennas.

Of course, the value of AI is only as good as the competence applied to developing the deep learning algorithm. What makes SatAware so powerful is the people behind the software. It benefits from the knowledge and vast experience of our Oscilloquartz team of globally leading timing experts. Its machine learning is also powered by the widest pool of anonymized satellite data drawn from a range of leading service provider sites.

We’re sure that SatAware™ is going have a major impact, enabling incredible new efficiencies. Now, with a monthly or annual subscription, operators can access a clear picture of their satellite sync network at any time and carry out vital predictive maintenance. It's like seeing the future of GNSS-based timing.

Ulrich Kohn

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