Critical National Infrastructure
Timing | Location | Integrity
Helix Antenna Based Solutions
Critical infrastructure depends on precision timing synchronisation and location
Global connectivity, economics and infrastructure is becoming increasingly reliant on real-time, accurate data. The need for highly accurate time-stamping as well as position, is essential to maintain and improve the reliability, performance and security of critical systems, facilities and networks. And with enhanced timing and synchronisation we see new use cases, with Blockchain and Data Integrity requirements creating global demand.
Helix GeoSpace creates the downstream technology that enables GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite Systems) and underlying PNT (Position Navigation Timing) technologies to be used with precision and confidence in a wide array of critical national infrastructure applications, defending against vulnerabilities and malicious threat.
Nanosecond precision timing for synchronisation of critical data networks and infrastructure
Time is an invisible utility that underpins capability across critical national infrastructure. UTC (Coordinated Universal Time) is the basis for global navigation satellite systems delivering Position Navigation and Time (PNT) information – it ensures the synchronisation of global infrastructure from 5G networks to the energy grid, and timestamps that provide traceability critical for trading platforms in financial services.
Nations have become increasingly dependent on the capability of Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) to enable timing and synchronisation at accuracy measured in fractions of nanoseconds. But our awareness of this dependency is poor, putting economies, data networks and energy distribution at significant risk of disruption due to environmental interference and a developing malicious threat landscape.
timing. location. integrity.
Helix Dielectrix antennas enable the sub-nanosecond timing and synchronisation that’s being demanded for next-gen critical infrastructure applications like the Open Compute Project open time server:
We have developed and patent-protected a completely novel approach to creating the smallest antennas capable of delivering world-beating performance for GNSS and terrestrial or satellite data communications. It combines material science, RF innovation, and precision manufacturing, and we call it Dielectrix.
Immunity to multi-path signals
Commonly known as ‘the urban canyon effect’, reflected signals disrupt and confuse GNSS receivers leading directly to inaccuracy. The infrastructure challenge is to minimise latency by positioning the antenna close to the servers requiring accurate time stamping, but antennas are typically placed on rooves and servers in the basement. That’s why DielectriX antennas are strongly polarised for right-hand circular polarisation (RHCP) signals in order to discriminate the direct satellite signals, and ignore all reflected ones, so they can be positioned low down amongst buildings, and receive only direct path signals for precision timing.
Resilience to interference and jamming
Static antennas on buildings may be easily identified by those intent on malicious jamming. GNSS signals are transmitted in narrow sections of the L-band (1-2GHz), which makes a DielectriX filtering antenna highly desirable to ensure adjacent band interference is ignored. By tuning tightly to the desired signals wide-band jamming is mitigated as the antenna is able to discern the satellite signals within the individual GNSS frequency bands.
Small and rugged
DielectriX antennas are compact and discrete, making them difficult to identify as targets for jammers.
No near-field degradation
Objects in the near field do not detune or degrade the performance of DielectriX antennas. They can be mounted on the outside of buildings against walls and windows without degrading their performance.