RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK – SmartSky Networks, the Triangle-based firm rolling out an air-to-ground high speed data network, has recently closed on nearly $70 million and is within $11 million of its $100 million funding goal.

The company is in the process of implementing an air-to-ground network that uses a patented technology known as spectrum reuse, recently opened its first fully operational coverage zone across a contiguous portion of Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina.

The funding news was disclosed in a new SEC filing. 

SmartSky says it recently reached and completed the technical milestones to enable operation for the network in this region.  The network provides what the company calls “office-grade, bi-directional, multi-Mbps inflight connectivity,” noting that the connection also has low latency.

RTP firm SmartSky launches first corridor for its in-flight internet network

“We are showcasing the unparalleled inflight networking capabilities and advanced services that SmartSky is bringing to market for the connected aircraft ecosystem of operators, manufacturers, service providers and passengers,” said SmartSky CEO David Helfgott in a statement when the first coverage zone was announced.

Here’s what the company promises:

“SmartSky Networks offers unmatched connectivity via our high performance and low latency air-to-ground network, delivering data
at the pace of life. Utilizing innovative hardware and a flexible platform, our network is built to get the right information to the right person at the right time — whether emailing, transferring large files, videoconferencing, or delivering aircraft maintenance data to the [operator], SmartSky Networks securely connects whatever is most important, in real-time.”

First sale for the new round came in August. The round is all equity, according to the filing.