Meteor Communications (Europe) Ltd (MCE) was formed in 1986 with a remit to establish a Meteor Burst Radio network across Europe. It was originally a joint venture between Meteor Communications Corporation and Pharos Marine (Automatic Power)
OFCOM granted MCE licences for dedicated Meteor Radio frequencies covering the UK and surrounding waters and in 1987 the first Meteor Radio Master Station was established, near Newbury in Berkshire. Over time this has grown to a network of five Master Stations which give comprehensive coverage of the UK and surrounding waters.
In early years Meteor became established as a provider to Water Companies and the National Rivers Authority, providing not just telemetry but a whole range of services to the emerging environmental monitoring market. Within a short space of time a network of sites was in place across the UK covering Water Quality, Air Quality and Flow.
The company expanded into other areas, providing SCADA to offshore gas platforms for AMOCO and BP, and went on to develop one of the first vehicle tracking networks in the Scottish highlands.
The company has always operated on a strong technical basis, and the majority of staff are from engineering backgrounds. This has always been a key feature of the company and ensures that customer requirements are clearly understood and correctly implemented.
Following a management buyout in 2007 the company is now employee owned, and benefits from the flexibility this gives to diversify and expand the business to the direct benefit of customers.
Based in Welwyn Garden City since 2017 the company has extensive facilities to build, prototype and test systems prior to customer delivery. The MeteorCloud® development and support team are also based here along with administration and the senior management team.
The company is steadily expanding and is continuously developing and evolving new products, web services and field engineering capabilities to ensure that Meteor are the forefront of the environmental monitoring market.
Principles of Meteor Burst Communication
Meteor Burst Radio is an established form of long range radio communication which relies upon the presence of ionised trails in the upper atmosphere to create a radio path. These trails are created by millions of small meteorites as they burn up.
More information regarding the theory of Meteor Burst communication can be found on Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meteor_burst_communications
Worldwide many systems successfully use Meteor Radio to obtain data from remote locations. Most prominent is the US Natural Water Conservation Service SNOTEL system. This consists of over 700 stations across 11 states including Alaska. For more information see their website http://www.wcc.nrcs.usda.gov/factpub/sntlfct1.html