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17 May 19. Kleos announces Kongsberg as provider for maritime satellite network ground station. Space company Kleos has appointed Norwegian company Kongsberg to provide a ground station for its satellite maritime monitoring service.
Kleos chief executive Andy Bowyer said the appointment of Kongsberg Satellite Services (KSAT) marked the next milestone towards revenue generation, starting after the commissioning of the Kleos’ Scouting Mission Satellites.
“One of the keys to our success lies in the choice of technological partners. We have appointed Kongsberg as they are one of the world leaders for data reception and near real time Earth observation services,” he said.
“Kleos is proud to work with Kongsberg, with 50 years’ experience in a fast growing and challenging industry and environment.”
Kleos, which based in Luxembourg and listed on the Australian Securities Exchange in August last year, plans a constellation of 20 small satellites able to geo-locate maritime radio transmissions.
That allows accurate location of vessels in distress, as well as those not broadcasting automatic identification system (AIS) signals.
Kleos said that would allow governments and organisations to detect activity such as drug and people smuggling, illegal fishing and piracy, as well as identify those in need of search and rescue at sea.
Kleos said KSAT was a world leading provider of communication services for spacecraft and launch vehicles with an extensive and uniquely located global ground network. KSAT also provides advanced monitoring services.
Kleos’ satellites will initially transmit observation data to the KSAT downlink ground station at Svalbard in Norway.
Kleos will have access to additional ground stations within the KSAT network, currently consisting of 15 locations worldwide through the KSAT Lite platform, which can provide back-up facilities and enlarged flexibility for Kleos.
KSAT comprises a global network of ground stations at sites, with more than 170 remotely controlled antennas, providing an optimised service for satellites in polar, inclined and equatorial orbits.
KSAT is owned half by Space Norway AS and half by Kongsberg Defence and Aerospace AS.
Space Norway AS was established in 1995 as a state-owned enterprise of the Norwegian Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries. (Source: Space Connect)
17 May 19. Reprogrammable satellite begins to take shape. The payload and platform of the first European satellite that can be completely reprogrammed after launch have been successfully joined together, the European Space Agency has announced. The satellite has been developed as an ESA Partnership Project with satellite operator Eutelsat and satellite manufacturer Airbus, under ESA’s program of Advanced Research in Telecommunications Systems (ARTES), leveraging on Surrey Satellite Technology, which provided the satellite’s innovative platform.
The assembly of Eutelsat Quantum took place in the Airbus facility in Toulouse, France, on 10 May. Eutelsat Quantum will allow its users to actively define and shape the performance and reach they need from the satellite.
Because Eutelsat Quantum takes a software-driven approach, changes can be made while it is in orbit, such as adjusting the satellite’s coverage, frequency and power, which enables it to operate from any orbital position. The successful mating of the payload and platform demonstrates the excellent capabilities of Airbus, Surrey Satellite Technology and their suppliers, both in the conception and the realisation of the new technologies deployed in this innovative satellite.
ARTES Partnerships Projects help European and Canadian space industries to develop new products and services, supporting the introduction of novel technologies and solutions that might not otherwise reach the market.
The Quantum partnership has the strong backing of the UK Space Agency and includes Airbus UK as prime contractor and payload provider. With Surrey Satellite Technology, Airbus UK manufactured and integrated most of the satellite’s cutting-edge equipment.
The completed satellite will now be tested under the harsh conditions needed to simulate both launch and the space environment in which it will orbit the Earth. (Source: Space Connect)
16 May 19. Space Launch Startup Earth to Sky Announces Launch Services Agreement with Delta Satellite Solutions. Earth to Sky, Inc. (ETS) announces the signing of a definitive launch services agreement with Delta Satellite Solutions, Inc. (DSS), a provider of payload and satellite integration services for academic institutions. The launch will occur in March 2021 to 550 km sun synchronous orbit and will launch 120 cubesats.
“We are very excited to be working with DSS, supporting opportunities for educational institutions to fly cubesats,” said Chris Barker, President of ETS. “Our Sleek Eagle launch vehicle mated with our Cubesat Ring dispenser is capable of launching dozens of cubesats and other satellites on a single mission.”
“The educational market for cubesat missions is significantly underserved,” said Evelyn Torres Bada, President of DSS. Various STEM and government programs support development of satellites but not flying them and, as a result, there are hundreds of cubesats in colleges and universities around the world that are waiting for an opportunity to fly. Ms. Torres Bada commented that “the current high cost of flying cubesats, even as secondary payloads, has prohibited most from launching. Our price point is significantly under today’s costs and we plan to meet this large and growing need. We understand the tremendous educational value and motivation that being part of a satellite program operating in space can be for students at all levels. These un-launched satellites could become a significant boon for STEM related subjects when they are orbiting the Earth.” (Source: BUSINESS WIRE)
15 May 19. Independent estimate claims Space Force could cost up to $4.7bn in start up costs. The Department of Defense is pushing back against an independent estimate claiming that it could cost up to $4.7bn in one-time costs to establish a Space Force. As proposed by the Trump Administration, the Space Force would be a separate military service located within the Air Force that would take over many of the various space-related functions of the other services. A My 8 report from the Congressional Budget Office estimates that the Trump Administration’s Space Force proposal would be priced anywhere from $1.8bn to $4.7bn in one-time start up costs. That’s significantly more than the $2bn the administration says it will cost to launch Space Force over the next five years. The CBO is a federal agency that provides independent budget and economic information for Congress. The Department of Defense has pushed back on the CBO’s figures, as first reported by Space News. In a statement provided to C4ISRNET, Department of Defense spokesman Tom Crosson said the CBO estimates were not based on the department’s specific proposal.
“The CBO estimates are based on different assumptions than the DoD’s legislative proposal. The CBO did not consult with DoD or evaluate the DoD Space Force proposal. The Department proposed a lean organizational structure for the Space Force that avoids significant bureaucratic growth by leveraging existing Air Force capabilities,” Crosson said.
At a May 14 hearing of the House Commerce committee’s aviation and space subcommittee, Air Force Space Command Vice Commander Lt. Gen. David D. Thompson made similar arguments about how Space Force would be able to take advantage of Air Force infrastructure to remain efficient.
“Space Force is (…) efficient because it also capitalizes on the support and infrastructure and other capabilities the Air Force already has,” Thompson said. “I think that the proposal that was put forward by the Department of Defense is the best course going forward for the department and the nation.”
One explanation for the disparity between the administration’s estimates and the CBO’s is the lack of public details available about what the Space Force would actually look like.
The administration’s current space reform efforts would also create two other organizations as well as Space Force: a combatant command, U.S. Space Command and an agency in charge of space systems development and acquisition known as the Space Development Agency. The costs of both of those organizations are included in the CBO’s estimate.
In March, the administration claimed that it would cost just about $500m annually to operate Space Force annually, but the CBO estimates that a new service located within the Air Force would cost somewhere between $820m and $1.3bn annually. Those figures do not include the one-time startup costs laid out by CBO, which range from $1.1 billion to $3 billion, or the costs associated with establishing and operating Space Command or the Space Development Agency.
The Trump administration’s 2020 budget request calls for $72m to begin setting up Space Force. If Congress does decide to establish Space Force, it would be the first new branch of the military added since the Air Force was created in 1947. (Source: Defense News)
16 May 19. Australia needs the capability to launch large and small satellites. For Australia to become truly space-capable, it must be able to launch large satellites into geostationary orbit as well as small satellites into low-Earth orbit. With the new Australian Space Agency now up and running, there are high hopes that Australia will soon develop a sovereign launch capability, according to a report on the Australian Strategic Police Institute (ASPI) The Strategist blog.
But not all space launches are equal, it said.
Launch parameters for placing a 600-kilogram satellite into geostationary orbit are different to those for placing several small satellites into low-Earth orbit.
“Australia’s space launch facilities must be ready to cope with both extremes if the nation is to become truly space-capable. There’s a danger in thinking that one size fits all in satellite launch facilities, launch telemetry and subsequent monitoring,” defence commentator Geoff Slocombe said in the article.
Already, New Zealand is ahead of Australia, with the Rocket Lab facility on the Mahia Peninsula on the North Island so far launching 28 satellites in five launches, the most recent on 5 May.
Two Australian firms, Black Sky Aerospace and Gilmour Space Technologies, both based on the Queensland Gold Coast, are developing rockets able to launch small satellites from northern Australia.
Last November, Black Sky conducted Australia’s first launch of a commercial payload from southern Queensland. That didn’t go into orbit – rather it was a test of materials and sensors.
Gilmour conducted its first test launch in in July 2016 with the blastoff of the prototype “reusable ascent separation article”, which reached a height of about 5,000 metres.
Both companies are planning further launches soon.
Other companies are planning space bases in South Australia and the Northern Territory. Queensland is also likely to get on board.
In the NT, the firm Equatorial Launch Australia has the backing of the NT government for its Arnhem Space Centre, near Nhulunbuy, which it said will be Australia’s first commercial space launch facility.
Southern Launch is planning what it calls Whalers Way Orbital Launch Complex on SA’s Eyre Peninsula. It also said this will be Australia’s first commercial launch facility.
The ASPI article said there’s a lot of scope for Australia and New Zealand to offer small-satellite launch services at very attractive prices through the rideshare concept to Asian countries as well as to our home markets. (Source: Space Connect)
15 May 19. High winds force SpaceX to postpone first launch of Starlink satellites. Billionaire Elon Musk’s SpaceX postponed a planned Wednesday night blastoff of a Falcon 9 rocket carrying the first 60 satellites for his new Starlink internet service, citing excessive winds over the Florida launch site.
Launch of the mission, aimed at placing the initial stage of Musk’s space-based global internet network into low-Earth orbit, was rescheduled for 10:30 p.m. on Thursday (0230 GMT Friday) from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, SpaceX said.
In a call with reporters before Wednesday’s countdown was halted, the high-tech entrepreneur praised the “fundamental goodness” of his ambitions to expand internet connectivity globally but cautioned that success was far from guaranteed.
Musk said he expects revenues from rocket launch services provided by his privately held Space Exploration Technologies, known as SpaceX, to top out at about $3bn per year. That makes Starlink key to generating the cash that SpaceX needs to fund Musk’s larger dream of developing new spacecraft capable of flying paying customers to the moon and eventually trying to colonize Mars.
“We think this is a key stepping stone on the way towards establishing a self-sustaining city on Mars and a base on the moon,” said Musk, who is also the chief executive officer of automaker Tesla Inc.
Each satellite in the first Starlink launch weighs 500 pounds (227 kg), making this the heaviest SpaceX payload to date.
It will take at least 12 launches of additional satellites to achieve Musk’s goal of providing constant internet coverage for most of the world, he said. Starlink is only authorized for operations in the United States.
Musk faces stiff competition. In February, Airbus SE-backed OneWeb launched its own clutch of satellites, while LeoSat Enterprises and Canada’s Telesat are also working to build data networks. [L1N20M1ZB]
All consist of tiny satellites that orbit closer to Earth than traditional communications satellites, a radical shift made possible by leaps in laser technology and computer chips.
Musk has faced other challenges. Frustrated with the pace at which Starlink satellites were being developed, he fired at least seven members of the program’s senior management team at a campus in Redmond, Washington, outside Seattle, Reuters reported. Musk said SpaceX has “sufficient capital” to make Starlink operational but would potentially need to raise money if things go wrong with the multibillion-dollar endeavor, which he called “one of the hardest engineering projects I’ve ever seen done.”
Musk said SpaceX would begin approaching customers later this year or next year. As many as 2,000 satellites will be launched per year, he said. But he wavered on the timeline for placing as many as 12,000 satellites into orbit as the company had previously described. (Source: Reuters)
15 May 19. Iridium Communications Inc. (NASDAQ: IRDM) announced today that Iridium Certus has won the award for “Top Connected Platform” during the annual Mobile Satellite Users Association (MSUA) Mobility Satellite Innovation Awards at SATELLITE 2019. Iridium Certus is a unique platform that enables both the development and adoption of specialty broadband applications while serving as the world’s only truly global commercial broadband service. The “Top Connected Platform” award comes less than four months after the service made its acclaimed commercial debut on January 16, 2019.
With more than 30 global service providers and six Value Added Manufacturers producing terminals for a combination of maritime, land-mobile and aviation markets, Iridium Certus continues to see growing adoption at a global level. This is the result of its best-in-class service reliability, top-end L-band broadband speeds, smaller antenna and terminal sizes compared to competitive services, cost-effectiveness and unique truly global coverage. The service has already proven to be a powerful ally for crews at sea, teams deployed to remote areas and organizations in need of on-the-move connectivity anywhere in the world at any given moment.
“We’re honored to see Iridium Certus gain such important recognition from our colleagues in the satellite industry. Iridium Certus is a truly unique platform and is already serving as an engine for innovation for our partners around the world,” said Matt Desch, CEO, Iridium. “This is just the beginning though, and later this year our partners will receive our new Iridium Certus 9770 transceiver that will open the door for an entirely new family of devices optimized for highly mobile and lower-cost applications. This can include personal devices offering rich data streams, pictures and even some video at a price point never before possible from a satellite operator. We thank MSUA for this honor and look forward to what the future will bring!”
“Innovations in mobility, such as Iridium Certus, help reduce the barriers and showcase the benefits of satcom for organizations that previously may not have been able to justify its adoption,” said Catherine Melquist, president of MSUA. “MSUA is proud to present Iridium with the ‘Top Connectivity Platform’ award and looks forward to witnessing the company’s future innovations and continued leadership in our industry.”
Currently, three Iridium Certus terminals are commercially available, including the Cobham SAILOR 4300, MissionLINK™ by Thales, the only land-mobile terminal available today, and VesseLINK™ by Thales, with aviation terminals making their debut in late 2019 and 2020. These terminals are currently enabling on-the-move mobile office functionality for deployed personnel and two-way remote communication for assets, autonomous vehicles, trains and ships at sea for companies, governments and other organizations. Iridium Certus is also being developed as a platform for both maritime (GMDSS) and aviation safety services, as well as an ideal complement to other satellite and terrestrial technologies.
15 May 19. Defense spending bill includes $15m to study Space Force. A House defense spending bill would provide $15m to study plans for a Space Force rather than funding the establishment of the military branch as President Trump requested. The bill would allocate $15m to “study and refine plans for the potential establishment of a Space Force as a branch of the Armed Forces,” according to draft bill text released Tuesday by House Democrats. The text adds that “nothing in this provision shall be construed to authorize the establishment of a Space Force.”
Asked for comment, a House Appropriations Committee spokesman highlighted remarks from Defense subcommittee Chairman Pete Visclosky at a May 1 hearing with acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan.
“The details for the actual implementation of Space Force are yet to be developed as I understand it and is evidenced by the request for transfer authority for funding for a five year period with an additional two-year option as part of a legislative proposal,” Visclosky said at the hearing. “It’s easy to spend money this year and then we’re stuck.”
The Trump administration has proposed creating a Space Force that sits in the Department of the Air Force in a structure similar to the Marine Corps’ relationship to the Navy.
To begin setting up Space Force headquarters, the administration requested $72.4m for fiscal 2020. The Pentagon has projected it would cost a total of $2bn over five years to set up the service and $500m annually to run it. The idea to put a space military service under the Department of the Air Force follows a plan the House passed in 2017 for a space corps. But lawmakers in both parties have expressed concerns about the specifics of the Trump administration’s proposal. Among the concerns are that the new service would be too top-heavy, as well as proposals to grant broad authority to transfer funding and waive civil service rules.
There have also been questions about the accuracy of the Pentagon’s price projection.
The Congressional Budget Office recently estimated setting up a new space military service under the Air Force could cost $1.1bn to $3bn up front, with annual costs of $820m to $1.3bn. The administration also plans to set up a U.S. Space Command to focus on war-fighting and a Space Development Agency to handle acquisition. The Pentagon asked for $83m to stand up Space Command and $150m to create the Space Development Agency. The defense spending bill released Tuesday would withhold funding for the Space Development Agency until 90 days after the Pentagon gives Congress a detailed plan for the agency. (Source: Defense News Early Bird/https://thehill.com)
12 Apr 19. Hughes to support USAF Protected Tactical Enterprise Service programme. Hughes Network Systems has received a contract to support the development of mission management system and joint hub for US Air Force’s (USAF) $383m next-generation Satcom ground system. The contract was awarded by Boeing and involves the company developing mission management, system control, networking and ground hub platforms. These subsystems will support anti-jam satellite communications capability for the USAF’s Protected Tactical Enterprise Service (PTES) programme. The PTES will provide a joint ground-based platform for protected communications services for tactical troops through the Wideband Global Satcom (WGS) satellite constellation, commercial satellites, and the Department of Defence’s (DoD) Protected Tactical Satellites that use the Protected Tactical Waveform (PTW) in future.
Hughes is required to design PTES sub-systems for the first phase of Protected Anti-Jam Tactical Satcom (PATS).
Hughes vice-president and PTES programme manager Dr Rajeev Gopal said: “Hughes is developing a state-of-the-art, containerised software design for PTES data, control and management functions with scalable architecture to enable the use of advanced artificial intelligence and machine learning techniques.”
Boeing is the prime contractor for the PTES programme. The company was awarded a seven-year contract by the USAF in November for the development of the joint ground system for the programme.
The company began the contracted work at the end of last year and is expected to complete it by the end of 2025.
Hughes Defense and Intelligence Systems Division (DISD) general manager Rick Lober said: “Hughes looks forward to working with Boeing and the USAF in applying its more than four decades of experience in developing Satcom networks and management systems for commercial and government enterprise applications.
“Hughes is committed to building and supporting secure global communications networks, and our team is dedicated to helping provide the DoD a highly resilient, tactical network that will enable mission success in contested environments.” (Source: airforce-technology.com)
15 May 19. Government announces $3.5m launch readiness and payload certification funding. Industry, Science and Technology Minister Karen Andrews has used a visit to rocket company Gilmour Space Technologies to announce funding to boost Australia’s booming space sector. That comprises $2.5m so that companies can have rocket payloads certified in Australia rather than overseas and $900,000 to explore Australia’s growing readiness in launch capability.
Minister Andrews made the announcement during a visit to space company Gilmour Space Technologies on the Queensland Gold Coast. Gilmour is planning its first sub-orbital rocket launch from the Queensland outback some time in the next few weeks.
“Here on the Gold Coast we have a growing space sector and we have Gilmour Technologies absolutely leading the charge in the space race,” she said.
Minister Andrews said the government would contribute $2.5m to fund the Space Payload Qualification Facilities project, aimed at growing local space industry capabilities.
“This initiative will provide the infrastructure for small and medium enterprises to test and validate space equipment in Australia, without having to send work overseas,” she said.
“The Morrison government wants to improve our sovereign capabilities in all things to do with space – our aim is to make Australia a leader in the great space adventure we have embraced.
“The project will seek contributions from states and territories and industry to support its development.”
Minister Andrews said the government would provide also $900,000 to explore Australia’s growing readiness in launch capability.
“With such active interest from across Australia, we need to ensure our risk frameworks are appropriate and we meet our international and national obligations,” she said.
“This project will investigate the economic and policy issues posed by a domestic small launch capability, compliance with international obligations, national legislation and regulatory and risk frameworks to protect our national interests, environment and safety.”
Called the Pathway to Launch project, this will build on related work underway in the states and territories.
None of this is new money. Funding for both projects is part of the $19.5m Space Infrastructure Fund announced in the budget.
Minister Andrews said through investments such as these, the government was fostering a competitive and sustainable industry, with the ultimate aim of creating another 20,000 jobs and tripling the size of the space sector to $12 billion by 2030.
She said this would be aided by the expansion of space industries in the states and territories, achieving further economic growth and creating an additional 1.25 million jobs over the next five years. (Source: Space Connect)
15 May 19. DST developed system keeps an eye on the sky. Cortex, a specialised system developed by DST, is taking a smart look at Defence’s satellite communications networks. Cortex is a prototype satellite spectrum monitoring system that combines communications planning information with live spectrum monitoring and equipment control in a form tailored to the workflow requirements of Defence satellite network operators.
Defence uses satellites for communicating with units beyond line of sight, employing a constellation of geostationary satellites. Defence network operators are responsible for getting links up and running according to communication plans, doing the on-ground technical setting up and assisting users in the field if they need help.
Computer scientist Nick Manser, who has been with Cortex from the beginning, said, “What started off as a monitoring and management system has expanded into more of the research side of things.”
The team first trialled Cortex in 2013 in the lead up to Exercise Talisman Sabre, and since then it has provided significantly enhanced situational awareness and the detection of anomalies across Defence’s satellite network.
In 2015, a separate operational capability was set up with dedicated satellite antennas that can be accessed remotely from Canberra to monitor all the signals being transmitted by its satellites. It’s a constant eye on the sky, helping the network operators better understand what is happening over those links.
“From the start we’ve worked closely with the operators to understand their role and identify places where we can improve their job and make it easier,” Manser added.
DST scientists continue to refine Cortex, adding new features and interacting with Defence clients to showcase the latest features and elicit feedback to ensure the system meets changing requirements.
Cortex is being further developed with industry under a bilateral collaborative research agreement. The three-year agreement will explore new algorithms, concepts and techniques for advanced satellite communications and electromagnetic spectrum operations and management.
Cortex’s other important feature is that it is a distributed system – it can be deployed anywhere Defence has a satellite antenna.
Manser added, “Moving forward with new satellites that use very small beams, the network operators in Australia won’t necessarily observe the information being sent to users in the field.”
The hardware side of Cortex is also impressively modular to contain all the spectrum monitoring and support equipment. Once the Cortex hardware is plugged into the satellite antenna, it starts feeding data back into Cortex.
“The distributed nature of Cortex will allow data from antennas all around the world to be shared to build up situational awareness. As Defence’s reliance on satellite communication increases, Cortex will become more important in helping ensure they are operating as expected,” Manser said. (Source: Defence Connect)
15 May 19. Rocket Lab to launch rideshare mission for Spaceflight. Rocket Lab has announced that its next flight will launch multiple spacecraft on a mission procured by satellite rideshare and mission management provider, Spaceflight.
The mission is Rocket Lab’s seventh Electron launch overall and the company’s third for 2019, continuing Rocket Lab’s average monthly launch cadence. The flight follows dedicated missions launched for DARPA and the US Air Force’s Space Test Program in the first months of 2019.
The mission is named ‘Make it Rain’ in a nod to the high volume of rainfall in Seattle, where Spaceflight is headquartered, as well in New Zealand, where Launch Complex 1 is located. Among the satellites on the mission for Spaceflight are BlackSky’s Global-4, two US Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) Prometheus and Melbourne Space Program’s ACRUX-1.
Rocket Lab founder and CEO Peter Beck said rideshares have historically presented a challenge for small satellite operators, as they’re often at the mercy of the primary payload’s schedule and orbit.
“This exciting mission with Spaceflight demonstrates the new level of freedom now offered to small satellite operators thanks to Electron,” Beck explained.
The spacecraft manifested on the mission will be delivered to precise, individual orbits by Electron’s kick stage. Powered by the 3D printed Curie engine, the kick stage carries the payloads to a circular orbit before employing a cold gas reaction control system to orient itself for precise deployment of each satellite at pre-defined intervals. This removes the risk of spacecraft recontact during deployment and ensures each spacecraft is deployed to the ideal orbit.
Rocket Lab has been delivering small satellites to orbit since January 2018. The company has launched 28 satellites on Electron for a range of government and commercial mission partners including NASA, the DOD Space Test Program and DARPA.
“Rocket Lab puts small satellite operators in charge, offering an unmatched level of control over launch schedule. Thanks to Electron’s kick stage, we also deliver the kind of precision orbital deployment normally reserved for a prime,” Beck added.
Rocket Lab’s 2019 manifest is fully booked with monthly launches, scaling to a launch every two weeks by the end of the year. The first launch from the company’s second launch site, Launch Complex 2, at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport in Virginia, will also take place later this year. (Source: Space Connect)
15 May 19. New agreement secures finance for Sky and Space Global. Australian space company Sky and Space Global (SAS) has signed a definitive agreement with Danish satellite maker GomSpace for satellites for its proposed global communications constellation.
SAS managing director and chief executive Meir Moalem said this was a key step towards the launch of its new global coverage satellites and first revenues.
“The new 6U agreement will allow Sky and Space to deliver a global coverage nanosatellite fleet servicing the IoT (internet of things) and M2M (machine to machine) sectors, with strong potential demand for these services already evident,” he said.
That’s all conditional on cash-strapped SAS obtaining secured financing and SAS and GomSpace reaching an agreement on changes to the 2017 Pearls agreement.
“Should changes to the existing Pearls agreement entered into in 2017 … not be finalised with GomSpace within 30 days … it is likely that SAS will not be able to execute its operating strategy within the time frame as currently planned unless a suitable alternate satellite manufacturer is engaged,” the company said.
SAS, based in Perth, is planning what it calls the Pearls constellation of as many as 200 nanosatellites in equatorial orbit, providing low-cost communication and internet services for markets in Africa, South America and Asia.
Under the 6U agreement with GomSpace, there will be an additional constellation high inclination orbits, allowing full global coverage, including Australia, Russia, China, South Africa, Argentina and Canada.
Launch is planned for early next year. The company has signed launch MoUs with Arianespace and Rocket Lab.
However, the company continues to experience cash flow problems and is seeking to raise additional funds through a $7.4m second tranche and priority offer capital raising required to fund ongoing operations and the business plan.
SAS shares remain in a voluntary trading halt. The new agreement with GomSpace contemplates a new definitive Pearls agreement to replace the existing Pearls agreement signed in 2017. Under the new agreement with GomSpace, new nanosatellites will be delivered in two batches each of eight, with the first eight to be delivered by first quarter 2020. Order value of the first batch is €5.2m and batch two is up to €3.8m. (Source: Space Connect)
09 May 19. Envistacom announced during SATELLITE 2019 that that the company is expanding its partnership with the U.S. Navy and Department of Defense through two IDIQ contract vehicle awards, SPAWAR C4I Integrated International Solutions (CIIS) and SeaPort-NxG .
CIIS is an IDIQ contract vehicle that supports the acquisition and procurement of interoperable communication systems, and engineering, implementation and sustainment services by U.S. allied and coalition nations. These systems and services provide them with interoperable Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Combat Systems, and Intelligence (C5I) systems with U.S Navy interests and Department of Defense (DoD) security cooperation programs for foreign military sales (FMS). The C4I systems will be fielded on shipboard, submarine, airborne, shore, mobile and unmanned platforms.
Envistacom was first awarded the contract in 2015 as prime contractor with five subcontractors. The CIIS IDIQ award is a $163m modification to the previously awarded U.S. Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR) indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) C4I Integrated International Solutions (CIIS) contract.
The SeaPort-NxG contract is an IT-services based, multiple-award IDIQ contract vehicle with a total value of up to $5B. Envistacom will support Naval Sea Systems Command, Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command, Naval Supply Systems Command, Military Sealift Command, Naval Facilities Engineering Command, the Office of Naval Research, and the U.S. Marine Corps through the contract vehicle.
These contract awards together reinforce Envistacom’s growing reputation for success with the DoD community and the company’s commitment to providing state-of-the-art C5ISR capabilities to the DoD and its allied partners.
“Through the extension of the CIIS IDIQ and our participation in the SeaPort-NxG IDIQ, Envistacom will help equip U.S. armed forces with interoperable, resilient, reliable and responsive technology, as well as support the critical work of modernizing armed forces, necessary to achieve mission success” said Alan Carson, senior vice president, Envistacom.
14 May 19. Lower cost launch and satellites could also produce lower cost space weapons. The coming space boom is a very positive development for humanity’s long-term future in space but it also presents risks, a senior defence and space analyst warns.
Low cost and reusable launch systems, small cheap satellites and rapid space access could also lead to low cost anti-satellite and other space weapons (ASATs) for large and small powers, says Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) analyst Dr Malcolm Davis.
In a post on the ASPI The Strategist blog, he said the Space 2.0 approach was bringing transformational change to access to and use of space.
That compares to Space 1.0, with space activities solely the domain of national governments and conducted at vast cost using enormous single use launchers.
Dr Davis said the Space 2.0 paradigm was a very positive development for humanity’s long-term future in space.
“It makes many of the ambitious ‘big space’ goals, such as colonisation of the moon and Mars and the exploitation of space resources much more affordable and, thus, possible,” he said.
But that brought risks as it could be applied equally to developing counterspace weapons.
“Reducing costs through reusable rockets and small satellites, and the potential for reusable rocket to rapidly access space, opens up a quicker and cheaper path for the development of ASATs for major and minor powers alike,” he said.
“Low cost ‘CubeSats’, which normally provide useful services to terrestrial users can become ASATs if equipped with a payload such as a close-range jamming system.”
Current ASAT systems, possessed by China, Russia and the US, involve missiles launched from Earth. However a $10,000 CubeSat crashing into a multibillion-dollar intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance satellite could produce the same affect.
Dr Davis said states would increasingly seek to avoid capabilities that produced large amounts of space debris, which could just as easily damage or destroy their own satellites.
He said the emphasis would be on ‘soft kill’ tactics that were scalable and reversible, and also gave greater capacity for deniability, if not outright anonymity.
“Key capabilities of the space battlefield of 2035 will be directed energy weapons, cyber attacks, advanced electronic warfare and ubiquitous jamming. Space war may happen at the speed of light as satellites go dead without warning,” he said.
Dr Davis said the region for space warfare and counterspace capabilities would expand beyond geosynchronous Earth orbit to the moon and space around it, called the cislunar region.
Both China and the US are talking of putting man back on the moon, China within a decade, the US by 2024.
“The return to the moon is a key step in the next phase of human space activity and a key component of that will be competition for resources and wealth. That competition will affect the national interests of states and determine their future actions in space,” he said. (Source: Space Connect)
13 May 19. Trump seeks extra $1.6bn in NASA spending to return to moon by 2024. The Trump administration asked Congress on Monday to increase NASA spending next year by an extra $1.6bn (1.23bn pounds) as a “down payment” to accommodate the accelerated goal of returning Americans to the surface of the moon by 2024. The increased funding request, announced by President Donald Trump on Twitter, comes nearly two months after Vice President Mike Pence declared the objective of shortening by four years NASA’s previous timeline for putting astronauts back on the moon for the first time since 1972.
The proposed increase would bring NASA’s total spending level for the 2020 fiscal year to $22.6 billion. The bulk of the increase is earmarked for research and development of a human lunar landing system, according to a summary provided by NASA.
“Under my Administration, we are restoring @NASA to greatness and we are going back to the Moon, then Mars,” Trump tweeted on Monday. “I am updating my budget to include an additional $1.6 billion so that we can return to Space in a BIG WAY!”
NASA previously aimed to return crewed spacecraft to the lunar surface by 2028, after first putting a “Gateway” station into orbit around the moon by 2024. The newly accelerated goal – an endeavour likely to cost tens of billions of dollars – comes as NASA has struggled with the help of private partners to resume human space missions from U.S. soil for the first time since the shuttle programme ended in 2011.
NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine called the revised funding request a “down payment of confidence” from the White House.
“Our goal here is to build a programme that gets us to the moon as soon as possible,” Bridenstine told reporters on a telephone conference call late on Monday.
“In the coming years, we will need additional funds,” he said. “But this is a good amount that gets us out of the gate in a very strong fashion.”
Phil Larson, a former space policy adviser under Trump’s Democratic predecessor, President Barack Obama, questioned whether Congress had fully embraced Trump’s ambition to speed up human lunar exploration.
“I’m worried that without proper congressional buy-in, this budget amendment is at best, a massive waste of time, and at worst, pushing risky political timelines that could set NASA back for years,” Larson told Reuters.
Bridenstine said $651m of the extra funding would go toward NASA’s Space Launch System — the super-heavy rocket whose decade-long development led by Boeing Co has been hampered by delays and cost overruns — as well as design and construction of a new crew capsule called Orion.
The U.S. Apollo programme, NASA’s forerunner to the effort at returning humans to Earth’s natural satellite, tallied six manned missions to the moon from 1969 to 1972.
So far, only two other nations have conducted controlled “soft” landings on the moon – the former Soviet Union and China – but those were with unmanned robot vehicles.
Bridenstine said he was optimistic that Trump’s request would draw bipartisan support on Capitol Hill. The amendment envisions a simplified blueprint for the Lunar Gateway, the planned space outpost in lunar orbit that will serve as a stepping stone for sending astronauts to the moon’s surface.
NASA officials said they would turn to private companies such as Lockheed Martin Corp, Boeing and Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin for proposals on the design of Gateway and the human landing system.
Bezos, the richest person in the world and founder of Amazon.com Inc, unveiled last Thursday his space company’s mock-up of a lunar lander being built by Blue Origin. Bridenstine capped Monday’s media call by announcing that NASA’s latest lunar initiative would be named Artemis, the goddess of the hunt and of the moon in Greek mythology and the twin sister of Apollo. (Source: Reuters)
13 May 19. Launch contract signed for maritime microsatellite ESAIL. The first commercial microsatellite developed under ESA’s SAT‐AIS program for tracking ships, called ESAIL, has passed another milestone. On 9 May, Canadian operator exactEarth signed the launch service agreement with Arianespace. ESAIL is part of ESA’s Partnership Projects and has been developed to enhance the next generation of space‐based services for the maritime sector. The spacecraft will track ship movements over the entire globe as it orbits the planet.
Satellite coverage is essential, as about 90 per cent of global trade takes place on the oceans. It opens the door to enhanced safety, tracking ships and route provisions for industry, government and maritime authorities.
Ships of 300 tonnes or more in international voyages, cargo ships of 500 tonnes or more in local waters and all passenger ships irrespective of size are mandated by the International Maritime Organization to carry automatic identification system (AIS) equipment.
Peter Mabson, chief executive of exactEarth, welcomed the contract signing, saying, “We are looking forward to adding ESAIL to our industry-leading global maritime satellite constellation, which now consists of more than 60 in-orbit high performance satellite assets. The capabilities on ESAIL will allow us to continue to advance the state-of-the-art in maritime vessel tracking and data services, and will pave the way for future capabilities.”
Terrestrial AIS antennas needs direct line of sight with the vessels, however, so the system is limited by the curvature of the Earth. Satellite automatic identification systems, or SAT‐AIS, have no such restrictions and can receive messages from ships on the open ocean, enabling authorities to follow vessels’ movements throughout their entire voyage.
“I would like to thank ESA and LuxSpace and their satellite manufacturing team for their accomplishments in producing this leading-edge microsatellite,” Mabson added.
The ESAIL satellite is built by LuxSpace for the exactEarth constellation of AIS satellites, through an ESA Partnership Project, together with the Luxembourg Space Agency and other ESA member states.
ESAIL’s AIS receiver provides advanced antenna beamforming and ground signal processing capabilities. The satellite needs rigorous testing before launch to ensure it can provide this always‐on service.
Stephane Lascar, head of telecommunication satellite programmes at ESA, said, “ESA’s Partnership Projects offer the most appropriate scheme for private and public entities to de-risk investments and answer market needs. They maximise benefits to industry, thanks to ESA’s efficient co-management tailored to commercial practices.”
The satellite flight model has completed its environmental tests in Centre Spatial de Liège in Belgium, where it was exposed to mechanical vibration testing, simulating the violence of a rocket launch, as well as to the extreme temperatures and vacuum simulating the near-Earth orbital environment.
“This maritime microsatellite built in Luxembourg by LuxSpace, in partnership with ESA and exactEarth, demonstrates how a private company and the European Space Agency can closely work together to develop a new commercial product. ESA has been a key partner in developing the technical skills needed to compete in a highly demanding commercial space market,” Marc Serres, chief executive of the Luxembourg Space Agency, said.
ESAIL is a pioneering project for LuxSpace, which is also developing a multi‐purpose, modular platform called Triton‐X. Triton‐X will build on the manufacturing and testing heritage gained by LuxSpace through ESAIL, using New Space‐style off-the-shelf components to deliver a fully fledged satellite within months. (Source: Space Connect)
13 May 19. SA promotes space future blastoff at 7th Space Forum in Adelaide. South Australia has cemented its position as Australia’s space state, hosting its seventh forum to promote Australia’s booming space sector.
Premier Steven Marshal wasn’t around for the event – he’s in the US to promote the SA defence and space industries at the Sea-Air-Space Exposition in Washington.
In remarks on the forum program, he said SA and Australia had made great strides in the space sector since the last Space Forum six months ago.
South Australia was chosen as the home for the Australian Space Agency headquarters, testament to the vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem developing at the new Lot Fourteen innovation hub, site of the old Adelaide hospital.
“Some of the most innovative high-tech companies in Australia are already part of our rapidly-growing space community and we look forward to seeing this number increase as a result of this exciting announcement,” he said.
“In another win for the nation’s space sector, Lot Fourteen will also host Mission Control and a Space Discovery Centre.”
Topping that off, the new SmartSat CRC initiative, a locally-led co-operative research centre focused on the niche areas of intelligent satellite systems, advanced communications and Earth observation, would establish its headquarters in the same building as the Australian Space Agency. This was secured with a $55m Commonwealth grant and is a program worth $245m over seven years.
“The South Australian government is committed to building on this momentum in the space sector and ensuring our young people take advantage of the opportunities now available to them in the space industry,” he said.
Richard Price, chief executive of the South Australian Space Industry Centre, said enormous momentum is building behind the SA space sector.
“Our state is at the centre of the nation’s space endeavours, being home to the headquarters of the Australian Space Agency and the SmartSat (Co-operative Research Centre),” he said.
“The Mission Control Facility and Space Discovery Centre will soon be based in Adelaide.
“This further strengthens our leading role in this key industry.
“Together with strong attendance numbers expected for the space forum, this exciting investment is a true indication of the enormous momentum.”
More than 600 industry leaders, entrepreneurs, researchers and students attended the space forum on Thursday. This is the largest space event in the country and includes a series of panel sessions, covering space regulation, Australia, national and international space trends and the economics of space technology.
In the US, Premier Marshal will visit Team Defence Australia at the expo and meet representatives from key US defence companies.
He said this provided direct access to all the major international players across the defence and maritime industries.
He will also meet NASA associate administrator for international and interagency relations Al Condes at NASA’s Washington headquarters.
Premier Marshal said the meeting presents an invaluable opportunity to strengthen the relationship with the US within the space sector and explore opportunities for collaboration in the future.
“South Australia now has the genuine capacity to lead the way in the space sector nationally and internationally, so it’s crucial we forge relationships with giants of the industry like NASA, to maximise the potential for future growth,” he said. (Source: Space Connect)
11 May 19. USAF gains increased capacity with new anti-jamming satellite. The Air Force took control of the fourth Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) satellite on May 3, marking a step forward in the service’s efforts to provide jam-resistant communications for the military. The AEHF system replaces the Milstar constellation to offer highly protected communication for high priority military assets and national leaders. AEHF also serves the United States’ international partners of Canada, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.
The Air Force’s 4th Space Operations Squadron officially took control of the satellite during a brief ceremony on May 3 at Schriever Air Force Base in Colorado. The ceremony comes just days after the Air Force and Lockheed Martin successfully completed on-orbit testing of the satellite, which launched in October.
The new satellite increases the service’s capability and brings the program one step closer to its goal of six geosynchronous satellites in orbit. According to Lockheed Martin, the program’s prime contractor, one AEHF satellite provides more capacity than the entire Milstar constellation, allowing the military to transmit real-time video, battlefield maps and targeting data.
In a statement, Mike Cacheiro, Lockheed Martin Space’s vice president of protected communications, the fourth satellite arrived in its on-orbit position one month early.
The fifth AEHF satellite isn’t far behind. Lockheed Martin announced May 9 it had shipped the fifth satellite in the series to Cape Canaveral Air Force Station ahead of its expected launch on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket in June.
“We are thrilled to return to the Cape to launch AEHF-5 less than a year after launching AEHF-4, showing an accelerated pace to support the Air Force Space and Missiles Systems Center,” Cacheiro said. “The AEHF system is essentially a high capacity data network in the sky, and this is a complete paradigm shift for the future of protected communications.” (Source: C4ISR & Networks)
08 May 19. OneWeb Partners with Intellian for User Terminals. OneWeb has announced a partnership with Intellian to build user terminals designed specifically for remote enterprise networks, cellular backhaul expansion and remote connectivity needs. The user terminals will be the units provided to customers to enable the high-speed, low latency service that the global satellite constellation will deliver. These user terminals will be perfect for a range of use cases including connecting businesses in rural areas, schools, hospitals, farms and community centers.
This partnership represents a significant step-forward in the development of OneWeb’s system following the launch of its first satellites and its first customer announcements in February 2019. With six satellites now on-orbit and a range of antennas now in place, OneWeb is ready to advance the development of its portfolio of user terminals, ranging from compact flat panels to highly-efficient dual parabolics. All the user terminals will be designed to serve a range of customer needs, market verticals and use cases.
With many remote and unconnected areas around the world still lacking access to broadband, these user terminals will help to close to gaps and connect remote enterprises, as well as, expand cellular backhaul capacity which is essential for extending connectivity. The terminals will utilize dual-parabolic antennas to deliver cost-effective and efficient throughput making high-speed and low-latency services available in hard-to-reach areas and helping bridge the digital divide. OneWeb expects these terminals to be available for Commercial use in 2020.
Adrian Steckel, CEO of OneWeb, said this is an exciting moment for OneWeb as the company expands and develops the firm’s own user terminals with an extremely important partner. The company’s user terminals will always be designed with customer needs in-mind, ensuring a service is delivered they can trust.
Eric Sung, CEO of Intellian, noted that the company is thrilled that the firm’s design and manufacturing capabilities will help connect people in remote locations to this new satellite ecosystem. (Source: Satnews)
10 May 19. United States and Luxembourg Sign Memorandum on Space Co-Operation. The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the United States of America today signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) that will serve to catalyze and significantly deepen cooperation between the two countries in the field of space. Étienne Schneider, Luxembourg’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Economy, signed the MoU for the Grand Duchy. Wilbur Ross, U.S. Secretary of Commerce, signed for the United States.
The Memorandum will serve as a vehicle to establish a more formal dialogue, sharing of expertise and exchange of information between Luxembourg and the United States. The MoU will promote the continued growth of their respective space industries through new commercial and investment opportunities, as well as strengthen policy coordination as the two countries lead the international community in promoting a business-friendly regulatory framework. It also aims to strengthen collaboration by identifying projects of common interest, for example in the fields of civil space exploration, science, R&D, earth observation, space situational awareness and communication. Thus, the MoU further facilitates research, exploration, development, and use of space, not only by the two countries governments, but also by research institutes and private sector space companies.
Luxembourg’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Economy, Étienne Schneider declared: “The Memorandum offers a platform from which both Luxembourg and the U.S. can move forward together on collaborations and projects in space. Similar to the United States, the Grand Duchy is the first European country to offer a legal framework recognizing that space resources can be used. The agreement with the United States is yet another important step forward in enhancing international cooperation through our SpaceResources.lu initiative.”
U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross: “The United States and Luxembourg share a rich history and a common vision of a future in space that is overwhelmingly commercial. This Memorandum forms the basis for increased collaboration across a wide range of space activities, including research, exploration, defense, and space commerce. It also allows for partnership on important space problems like regulatory reform and space debris. As such, it covers the broadest possible range of space activities to be undertaken by the two countries as an important next wave of economic growth.”
U.S. Ambassador to Luxembourg Randy Evans stated: “This bold initiative heralds a new chapter in our bilateral relationship. Few countries are more ambitious than Luxembourg and the United States when it comes to space. By working together, our space companies, scientists, and policy experts will experience even greater growth and more breakthroughs for future generations. It is a tremendous growth area that will serve as the platform for many important things for years to come. Together we each do so much more than apart.”
Joint press release by the Luxembourg Ministry of the Economy, the U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. Embassy, Luxembourg. (Source: BUSINESS WIRE)
07 May 19. Harris Corporation Introduces High-Accuracy Reflector for Improved Satellite Communications. Highlights:
- Reduces stowed volume and antenna mass using unique Ka-band design
- Supports challenging communication, science and synthetic aperture radar missions
- Builds on company’s 40-plus-year large unfurlable antenna reflector legacy
Harris Corporation (NYSE:HRS) today introduced a next-generation space antenna reflector solution to provide critical communication links between satellites and ground stations.
Perimeter Truss is lighter and more compact than competitive and legacy reflector designs. When stowed, the reflector is 30 percent shorter than current industry architectures and has 50 percent lower mass than legacy designs – creating more flexibility for satellite and mission designers to reallocate mass to other payloads.
Perimeter Truss is offered in sizes ranging from three to 22 meters in diameter. With a composite structure and Harris’ proprietary high-frequency mesh, the new reflector architecture was developed to meet the increased demand for more accurate, more compact, and lighter reflectors.
Harris’ Perimeter Truss reflector was designed to support the most technically challenging communication and science missions and is one of two new designs that make up Harris’ expanded portfolio of reflector architectures. The company introduced its High Compaction Ratio Reflector late last year.
“The introduction of Harris’ Perimeter Truss Reflector continues Harris’ legacy of providing innovative space reflector solutions for our customers,” said Murali Krishnan, vice president and general manager, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance, Harris Space and Intelligence Systems. “Harris is committed to advancing our reflector solutions with unparalleled on-orbit success and design options.”
06 May 19. CopaSAT and Kymeta™ Have Flat Solution to Disruptive SOTM. Flat Panel Satellite Antenna. The disruptive SATCOM-On-The-Move (SOTM) solution delivered through CopaSAT and Kymeta™ Corporation partnership brings connectivity to commercial and military vehicles and vessels that have, until now, been cut off from such services. The custom-engineered CopaSAT STORM delivers reliable tactical communications to small, fast-moving vehicles and vessels operating in remote, communications-severed and inhospitable environments.
The CopaSAT STORM is a mission-ready, ruggedized, fully-integrated, Ku-band flat-panel terminal that includes a Kymeta u7 antenna, iDirect 950mp satellite router and a 25 Watt block upconverter (BUC). It is available in three different configurations including commercial, military and transportable. Advanced options are available that make it possible to add LTE capabilities, a WiFi access point, MANET radio, Newtec modem, as well as numerous mounting options for MRZRs, vehicle luggage racks and more. The CopaSAT STORM is on display during SATELLITE 2019 at stand #2238 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center from May 6 to 9 in Washington, D.C.
Steve Carpenter, General Manager, CopaSAT, said there are so many places, vehicles and vessels where you can’t use Commercial-Off-The-Self (COT) SATCOM solutions today. For example, MRZRs, 11meter, rigid, hull inflatable boats (RHIBs) and special operations craft. Legacy solutions don’t fit and cannot track fast enough to remain connected with a satellite while the vehicle or vessel is moving at high speed. This has always been a challenge. The CopaSAT STORM addresses the challenge, making all of these applications possible for the first time. It truly redefines situation awareness.
Paul Mattear, VP of Business Development and Sales at Kymeta noted that the CopaSAT team has built an impressive solution that meets the mission critical situations its customers operate in. It is tremendously exciting to see Kymeta™ u7 satellite antenna technology being deployed in highly mobile environments to support data, voice and video across military and government applications that have never been connected before. (Source: Satnews)
07 May 19. Gilat Reports Success. High Throughput Modem Powers First-Ever Demonstration of 5G Connectivity Over Telesat’s LEO Satellite. Gilat Satellite Networks Ltd. (NASDAQ, TASE: GILT) conducted a test last month at the University of Surrey that delivered successful, first-ever positive results. According to Gilat the demonstration was of Gilat’s high throughput modem that resulted in the first successful demonstration of 5G services over Telesat’s Phase 1 Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite connected to the University of Surrey’s 5G test bed network.
The testing confirmed that this required 5G backhaul solution can be provided by Gilat modem technology working with Telesat’s Phase 1 LEO satellite. The demonstration included video chatting, web browsing and simultaneous streaming of up to 8K video, and the project’s team also transferred 4K video to the edge of the 5G network, which is a major 5G future use case.
Live testing of these content rich data streams was achieved using 5G cellular technology that offers many benefits but requires an advanced backhaul solution that can quickly and cost effectively extend these benefits to subscribers beyond major cities.
Michel Forest, Director of Engineering, Telesat announced that Telesat is pleased to be collaborating with innovative companies such as Gilat that recognize the potential of Telesat’s LEO system to enable demanding low-latency 5G applications such as 4K video streaming. This demonstration confirms that Telesat’s state-of-the-art LEO architecture delivers on the promise of latency sensitive and high bit rate applications such as in 5G connectivity.
Amir Yafe, Head of Global Accounts at Gilat concluded that Gilat is proud to take part in the industry milestone demonstrating the capabilities of their backhaul solution in enabling outstanding results for next generation 5G applications over Telesat’s phase 1 LEO Satellite. This test further strengthens Gilat’s strategic partnership with Telesat in successfully demonstrating high-end applications over LEO satellite and further reinforces Gilat cellular backhaul leadership.
07 May 19. Airbus Takes Telesat’s LEO Constellation to the Test and to the Next Major Step. Airbus recently completed an arduous accounting of Telesat’s LEO constellation. Airbus has successfully completed the System Definition and Risk Management Project of Telesat’s LEO constellation and submitted to Telesat both space and ground segments solutions that not only meet Telesat’s ambitious requirements, but also provide cost effective and stable approaches for its longer term business objectives.
Airbus has performed system optimization, requirements engineering, and initial design of key hardware and software components for space, ground and user terminal segments.
It was also the opportunity for Telesat and Airbus to take stock of industrialization plans, a part of which will be located in Canada, Airbus’ fifth home country. Additionally, this enables Airbus to further develop its design and industrial capability in end-to-end systems with a large number of identical satellites. (Source: Satnews)
07 May 19. Newtec’s Equipment Succeeds. Test of First 5G Over Telesat’s LEO Satellite. According to Newtec the company has played a key role in the world’s first demonstration of 5G backhaul over LEO satellite with global satellite operator Telesat, a tier 1 European mobile operator, and the University of Surrey. The successful tests confirmed that LEO satellites will provide effective backhaul transport, including for future 5G networks.
The live test connected the University of Surrey’s 5G Test bed network within its 5G Innovation Centre to Telesat’s Phase 1 LEO satellite.
Video chat sessions, simultaneous 8K streaming and internet browsing were tested within stringent Quality of Service (QoS) and slicing parameters. A 4K video was also transferred to the edge of the 5G network representing a future 5G use case. Out of the technologies tested, Newtec modems demonstrated higher modulation, efficiency and throughput performances, and the ability to deliver 8K videos with superior Quality of Experience (QoE). This paves the way for increasingly bandwidth-hungry applications over 5G for the maritime, aero, connected car and broadband markets which have not previously been possible.
Jo De Loor, VP Market Development at Newtec, said the company is amazed at the opportunities this test opens up. The seamless and very high-performance connectivity provided by Newtec technology validates the use cases for many new 5G applications in the strategic market verticals where Newtec is positioned. The work carried out is a guideline for future multi-orbit deployments and highlights the benefits of the unique combination of LEO constellations and 5G.
Michel Forest, Director of Engineering at Telesat, added that Telesat is pleased to be collaborating with innovative companies such as Newtec that recognize the potential of Telesat’s LEO system to enable demanding low-latency 5G applications such as 4K video streaming. This demonstration confirms that Telesat’s state-of-the-art LEO architecture delivers on the promise of latency-sensitive and high bit rate applications such as in 5G connectivity. (Source: Satnews)
05 May 19. Euroconsult Group and RKF Engineering Solutions Enter Into a Collaborative Agreement. The Euroconsult Group and RKF Engineering Solutions have entered into a partnership agreement that combines Euroconsult’s industry strategic and operational consulting and research services with RKF’s engineering solutions for communication networks and satellite systems.
This collaboration will enable each of the independent entities to rely on the services portfolio of the other in order to bring added value to government and private sector clients alike.
Euroconsult Group’s range of consulting services to stakeholders in the high technology sector include market, policy, financial, regulatory and technical assessments, as well as satellite procurement support, construction monitoring and operations support. RKF is an industry leader in regulatory service and support, spectrum management, system engineering, and modeling and simulation for complex networks.Euroconsult and RKF Engineering Solutions will be attending SATELLITE 2019; please contact the companies directly if interested in initiating discussions at this trade show.
Pacôme Révillon, President of Euroconsult Group, said this partnership is a powerful combination. Euroconsult believes that the two entities are highly complimentary and this collaboration will bring greater value to future clients. Through the firms’ combined resources, experience and expertise, the company will be best positioned to satisfy the most demanding government and private sector clients and help generate leading programs and products.
David Marshack, Managing Director and COO of RKF Engineering Solutions, add this collaborative arrangement between the two like-minded companies will strengthen the firm’s ability to serve the company’s clients and bring them enhanced levels of service. Working as one team on key missions, this partnership will allow RKF to drive more technical and business impact for clients. Customers across-the-board will benefit from this partnership. (Source: Satnews)
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