Half of the global population may already be connected to the internet, but that doesn’t mean there still isn’t a need for greater broadband connectivity and telecom services in underserved regions of the world, specifically as it pertains to extremely rural and remote communities. 

The solution? High Altitude Platform (HAP) vehicles. This technology can be integrated with existing communication infrastructure around the world so that these vehicles are able to provide low-cost connectivity to people who would otherwise not be granted internet access — like those living in coastal, mountainous, and desert areas. 

Maybe you’ve heard about these capabilities before, and maybe you haven’t. This blog will give more context into what HAPs are and how they are set to transform the world.

Design and functionality

Because there currently aren’t yet commercially viable vehicles available, many people are unsure as to what these structures even look like. The design elements will vary from company to company, but they are generally either airships, airplanes, or balloons that can be either manned or unmanned. At Avealto, we went with an unmanned balloon, which is what we will use to model our future platforms after. You can visit our website to see the design elements of our HAPs, as well as photographs we’ve taken during our testing phase. 

These vehicles operate at an altitude of 18 km to 25 km in order to provide telecom and data services for large regions on the ground.

Operational expenses

Aerospace projects are often costly. Many aerospace contractors relay on cost-plus contracts form governments and have no incentive to work efficiently or lower the cost of developments.

Building and operating HAP vehicles is also expensive. You have to buy items like batteries, solar panels, and helium in order for each vehicle to operate, and then you have to factor in the costs that it takes to launch the vehicles and then maintain the vehicles during their operational lifetime.

Taking a traditional aerospace development approach to development is the reason why so many companies have failed to develop a commercially viable HAP.  Avealto has been able to conduct extensive feasibility testing and development work at a very low cost. Using outside contractors with specific expertise and closely monitoring costs and results, the company has completed the steps needed create a commercially viable HAP vehicle optimized to provide telecom and data infrastructure services

We are in our final stages of development and are currently raising funding to complete our Concept Demonstrator and set up our factory operations in the United Kingdom.

Economic development

This is the area I am the most passionate about, and is one of the reasons I founded Avealto back in 2013. HAPs have the potential to enhance economic development not only in the Western world, although we are already accustomed to fast, accessible internet service, but for underserved regions that don’t know connectivity like we do.

The potential for transformation is profound. High-quality telecom and data services can quite literally change the lives of people in third-world countries and those living in other rural and remote areas. These individuals will have access to information unlike ever before, greater access to virtual healthcare services, insight that will help them better understand their businesses, and a way to communicate with family and friends. And this is just the tip of the iceberg. 

Avealto has developed the technology to provide these services while operating at very health profit margins. Charity does not work as well as sustainable market-based solutions.

Our goal at Avealto is to provide low-cost and high-quality access that will allow individuals and organizations to connect with the rest of the world. I’m excited to be part of such an incredible time in history, one that would have been near impossible decades ago.