Lockheed Marting 5G from Space Illustration

5G from Space

Lockheed Martin Space delivers 5G standards-compliant network solutions to provide secure, interoperable connectivity across terrestrial and space-based networks.

Space-based 5G enables enhanced service to cities but also connects remote regions, including areas without traditional mobile service, ships off-shore, through natural disasters and in contested battlefields.


Features of 5G from Space:

  • Connect massive numbers of Internet of Things (IoT) sensors and devices
  • Voice & Data services for commercial, protected, and secure communications anywhere.

Case Studies


Problem: Truck in an autonomous convoy breaks down in a remote stretch of highway. A logistics company’s automated dispatch center is monitoring shipments across its fleetwhen a truck signals a problem with its engine. The truck is in an area without traditional cell coverage.

Solution: The truck is connected via a mesh network with the other trucks in its convoy, as well as the smart highway. Additionally, the truck is able to connect to a 5G satellite overhead to transmit real-time data.

Dispatch recalculates delivery time and alerts its customers of possible impacts. At the same time, an alert is sent to a mechanic who can use the truck’s digital twin to diagnosis the problem, identify replacement parts and test out a repair before a mechanic is dispatched to a remote area. The smart highway alerts nearby trucks and vehicles to avoid the shoulder the disabled truck is parked.

The mechanic sends a software patch to the truck and instructions with a detailed parts list to a local mechanic who completes repairs and resets the truck’s sensor system. The truck is able to rejoin the convoy and continue its route.

5G from Space Benefits:

  • 5G connectivity from space enables cell coverage everywhere – including regions that are too expensive to connect by fiber or cell tower.
  • Seamless 5G connectivity enables the convoy & disabled truck to stay in constant contact with dispatch, even when convoy leaves disabled truck.
  • Higher bandwidth, with low latency lets mechanics sync the truck's operating data into digital twin to accurately diagnosis, test a fix and determine what other parts might need immediate attention before sending software fixes in the interim. mechanic access on-board cameras to visually inspect truck.

Problem: A ship in the Gulf of Mexico is on fire and starting to list. A container in distress transmits a may-day signal to the Coast Guard. A crew of 16 is on-board. The ship currently has traditional satcom coverage but is about to lose line of sight with SATCOM.

Solution: Nearby ships with maritime 5G over space connectivity hear the distress call over the UHF radio and change course toward the distressed ship.As the ships get close enough, an ad-hoc 5G mesh network is formed, increasing overall bandwidth tothe area to coordinate response.

The Coast Guard dispatches a nearby cutter and launches a ship-based drone for aerial ISR.The drone uses edge compute with on-board AI to estimate the exact location of the ship by triangulating the location of nearby support ships using the 5G stack. It also uses its S-Band connection to the cutter's more powerful 5G downlink.

The drone arrives on-scene and begins streaming video and audio with an infrared FLIR feed showing the source of the fire. It automatically joins the ad-hoc 5G network at sea to the ship's network to enhance data throughput.

The cutter now has a precise locationto chart a new course for her ship and send a rescue party to the ship’s crews.

5G from Space Benefits:

  • Scalableof 5G maritime network.
  • Mobile edge compute.
  • Network interoperability/gateway.
  • Network topology changes in real-time for mission using analytics.
Event Surge and Disaster Response

Problem: A major global sporting event is about to start. The stadium's terrestrial cell network is overwhelmed.

Solution: Overhead 5G satellites begin to connect devices. As more users start live streaming and photos and videos, more connections are made to satellites.

Additional satellites are automatically reprioritized/tasked to support this event.As halftime approaches, another plane of satellites takes over for the initial surge support. As the terrestrial network recovers, satellites are able to reprioritize bandwidth for other users.

5G from Space Benefits:

  • Seamless connectivity between terrestrial and satellite•Network orchestration between Earth and space balances load across bandwidth resources.
  • Real-time analytics let Mobile Network Operators prioritize data apps versus voice traffic.
  • Roaming between 5G satellite constellation using mesh connectivity.
  • Seamless to end-user.

The world is becoming more reliant on connecting everything, everywhere, all the time. This is especially important for lunar infrastructure where automation is far more necessary. There is an opportunity for these capabilities to be designed into lunar surface infrastructure from the beginning, and 5G network is the foundation that underpins the necessary connected, automated infrastructure.

Communication between the Moon and Earth is a core infrastructure required for lunar operations. Without real-time communications afforded by a local network with connectivity back to Earth, life on the Moon will not be possible. Exploration of the lunar surface is far more hazardous without the ability to call back to Artemis Base Camp. Detecting astronomical, terrestrial, or lunar threats is rendered ineffective without the ability for seamless communication and coordination of mitigation systems. 5G on the Moon leverages commercial technology deployed around the Earth to provide critical connectivity and localization for a variety of lunar assets.

Click to learn more about Lockheed Martin’s Parsec™ service.