A long-term core feature of GVF’s various initiatives has been the development of a consensus-based framework to improve the efficiency of satellite operators’ terminals type-approval procedures.

The Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA) was established through the MRA Working Group. Using this framework, once a type approval is provided to a manufacturer by any one of the participating satellite operators, other operators may mutually recognise the results of the tests conducted during the first operator’s type-approval process, so that the tests aren’t repeated unnecessarily.

To achieve this objective, the MRA-WG created the procedure GVF-101, which defines a set of standard tests that an antenna or earth station manufacturer should perform in order to apply for type approval from any satellite operator. Use of this procedure not only improves the quality and completeness of test data but helps reduce the time and cost required to bring new ground-segment technology to the market, thus advancing the competitiveness of satellite communications. The MRA has developed “living documents” which are reviewed for necessary updates and modifications to accommodate advances in technology. It also serves as the foundation for a growing number of specialised technical documents pertaining to selected earth station types. The following are “living” documents and all GVF Members are welcome to participate in the drafting and re-drafting process. To access the documents please click on the links below. For more information on how to participate, please contact the MRA Working Group Chair, Colin Robinson.

  • GVF-101– Mutual Recognition of Performance Measurement Guidelines and Procedures for Satellite System Operator Type Approvals
  • GVF-103– Duties of Authorized Test Entities under the Mutual Recognition Arrangement procedure
  • GVF-104– Performance and Test Guidelines for Type Approval of Auto-Deploy and VMES Satellite Communications Terminals
  • GVF-105– Performance and Test Guidelines for Type Approval of ‘Comms on the Move’ Mobile Satellite
  • GVF-107– Application for GVF Type Approval

The MRA-WG & the European Space Agency (ESA)

Since 2017, GVF has partnered with GVF members on three occasions to work on the European Space Agency’s Advanced Research in Telecommunicatons Systems programme, by developing an appropriate test methodology for qualifying COTM terminals and developing a novel approach for conducting on-site antenna verification using Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), or drones.

Earth Station Type ApprovalSOMAP