Loon

Preparedness solution for mobile network operators

Connectivity is critical after a natural disaster — it is a lifeline that enables those affected to reach out for help, to coordinate logistics and supplies, and to reconnect families and friends in the moments that matter most.

Loon disaster preparedness

When cell sites on the ground are damaged or lack power, Loon can dispatch a fleet of balloons to expediently provide LTE connectivity across a large geographic area to subscribers of a local mobile network operator. At 60,000 feet, our balloons fly far above ground-based weather and are fully solar-powered, making the network more resilient to natural disasters. And because the fleet of balloons can be repositioned, Loon can flexibly provide connectivity where and when it is most needed.

Weather Resilient

Loon operates far above ground weather, flying at 60,000 feet.

Power Resilient

Each balloon is independently solar-powered, with battery storage, and is not reliant on the local power grid.

Easy Deployment

No local staff is needed for activation or deployment, and Loon’s solution utilizes its own backhaul with minimal ground logistics.

Fast Activation

When balloons are prepositioned in a region before disaster strikes, Loon can provide service quickly in the moments that matter most.

PARTNERING WITH AT&T TO SCALE DISASTER PREPAREDNESS

By integrating with AT&T, Loon enables post-disaster service for AT&T’s telecom roaming partners in over 150 countries, subject to additional operational considerations. Being able to leverage AT&T’s network vastly expands the number of operators globally that Loon can work with without having to complete time-intensive network integration. In a disaster scenario, this saves valuable time enabling Loon to simultaneously serve multiple mobile network operators in a market.

Partnership Announcement

How it works

Loon works in partnership with local mobile network operators to supplement their existing networks and expand connectivity for their subscribers.
To enable emergency coverage and respond to a disaster as quickly as possible, Loon completes a number of steps beforehand, including:
1.

MOBILE NETWORK OPERATOR PARTNERSHIP

An agreement in place between Loon and the local operator, leveraging the standard international roaming relationship with AT&T.
2.

GROUND SETUP

Loon ground stations installed in the region to enable connectivity to Loon’s balloons.
3.

REGULATORY AUTHORIZATIONS

Spectrum access and operating authority from local regulators and overflight permissions to operate above the regions needing connectivity.
4.

BALLOONS

Balloons in the region or nearby.
With these steps completed in advance of a disaster, our floating cell towers can quickly reconnect people on the ground. The earlier we partner with local mobile network operators and governments before disaster strikes, the better positioned we are to quickly enable critical connectivity services after a disaster.

SOLUTION SPOTLIGHT

Delivering emergency connectivity in Puerto Rico

See how Loon delivered emergency connectivity after Hurricane Maria in 2017.

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SOLUTION SPOTLIGHT

Restoring connectivity in Peru

After Peru was battered by extreme rains and flooding in 2017, Loon partnered with Telefonica to restore connectivity to three different service regions, covering a combined area of 40,000 square kilometers. The process of setting up service took several weeks, working closely with Telefonica, the Peruvian regulatory authorities, and other industry partners.

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With advance preparation, Loon can respond to disasters extremely quickly. When an 8.0 magnitude earthquake struck Peru in 2019, Loon was able to respond within 48 hours to restore LTE connectivity to affected users.

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PARTNER WITH LOON

We are excited to partner with mobile network operators around the world. Our priority in 2020 includes preparing for hurricane season in the Caribbean, which is predicted to experience above-normal tropical storm and hurricane activity this year. To learn more about our service, please get in touch.