Industry at Large
AIA Appoints Assistant VP
Bruce Mahone, director of space policy at the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA), has been appointed assistant vice president of technical operations at AIA.
In his new position, Mahone will be responsible for coordinating the activities of the Technical Operations Council, which is responsible for technical program management, operations and industrial base issues that affect the development and production of aerospace systems. The council develops policy, requirements and standards relating to technical and operations issues.
TACHION Names Senior VP
Tachyon Networks Inc., a satellite broadband service provider to large enterprises and government agencies, named Denisse Goldbarg senior vice president of sales and marketing.
Based out of Tachyon’s corporate headquarters in Vienna, VA., Goldbarg will assume responsibility for driving the company’s sales and marketing initiatives, including driving Tachyon’s product development, channel strategies and targeting new customers for the company’s high-speed satellite broadband service. She will oversee a sales force that encompasses the United States, Canada, Latin America and other regions.
KISTLER Appoints CFO
Daniel Tam was named CFO at Kirkland, WA-based Kistler Aerospace. He will report directly to CEO Randy Brinkley. His addition to the company’s management team will help to advance the Kistler’s financial restructuring efforts and to spur development of its proposed K-1 reusable launch vehicle, according to company statements.
Kistler is in the process of finalizing a plan of reorganization in order to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Its largest creditor, Bay Harbour Management, is assisting in the effort.
LORAL SKYNET Selects President
Loral Space and Communications announced that Patrick Brant is the company’s new president for its subsidiary Loral Skynet. Brant succeeds Terry Hart. Brant takes the helm at Loral Skynet as Loral prepares to file a plan of reorganization that should allow it to emerge from bankruptcy before the end of the year.
Prior to this position, Brant served as an executive at Loral Cyberstar from 1999 to 2003, ultimately as its president and COO. He was a leading participant in Cyberstar’s integration into Loral Skynet in 2003. Prior to joining Loral, Brant held senior management positions at satellite companies, including Orbital Communications and American Mobile Satellite Corporation.
PACE Names New Tech Director
Pace Micro Technology made a key management appointment as it prepares to become a major player in the Personal Video Recorder (PVR) and High-Definition (HD) space. David Gillies is the company’s new director of technology, and he will help shape Pace’s strategy in these areas. Pace is a global provider of set-top boxes (STBs).
CAPROCK Expands Its Business In Asia
CapRock Communications has extended its service offerings in the Asia-Pacific region with the acquisition of Indonesia-based Telematika Java Duta. CapRock will provide increased services to energy exploration, maritime, construction, mining, forestry and government customers across Southeast Asia and the South Pacific.
The Telematika management team will stay on to run the Asia-Pacific region for CapRock. Telematika’s Jakarta-based teleport facilities will become CapRock’s new base of operations in Asia and will be augmented by CapRock’s existing regional facilities in Honolulu and Singapore.
TELENOR Launches New Maritime Service
Telenor Satellite Services announced the commercial launch of its maritime communications service, Fleet F33 Mobile Packet Data Service (MPDS).
The company’s Fleet F33 MPDS offers data communications to leisure boats, fishing vessels, coastal and security patrol boats, and other small vessels that before were unable to have a complete array of satellite communications due to equipment size and weight. Fleet F33 also provides global voice communications.
The system uses Internet Protocol (IP) technology and time-shared channels to allocate network resources, enabling Web access, e-mail, and "always on" remote access. This service works for a wide range of IP-based applications such as online navigational information and updates, online weather reports and e-mails with small attachments.
MICROSPACE Continues Digital Cinema Offering
Microspace Communications Corp., announced that it delivered the DreamWorks LLC movie, "Collateral", via its Velocity satellite platform to select digitally-equipped movie theaters within North America. The distribution, part of Microspace’s digital cinema pilot program, follows its May 2004 delivery of "Shrek 2".
The Galaxy Cinemas in Waterloo and Cambridge, Ontario, along with Famous Players in Vaughan, Ontario, participated in the Collateral distribution.
SCOPUS Delivers Conventions For CBS
CBS Newspath successfully deployed Scopus Network Technologies’ DVB digital video transmission equipment to cover the Republican National Convention (RNC) in New York, and the Democratic National Convention (DNC) in Boston. Using Scopus’ platform for encoding video signals, CBS Newspath delivered up to 15 different channels for CBS affiliates to pick up live remote feeds from the convention sites.
In contrast to the configuration used for the DNC at the RNC, CBS Newspath reallocated channels fed from inside the convention to offer coverage of events taking place elsewhere in the city.
XANTIC Offers BGAN Interconnectivity
Inmarsat selected Xantic to become one of the two suppliers for the interconnection between the terrestrial network carriers and mobile satcom users for its BGAN (Broadband Global Area Network) voice interconnect services to carriers wishing to deliver it from their networks to the Inmarsat destinations.
The BGAN service, currently planned for commercial launch in 2005, will offer high-speed, circuit-switched and packet data services, plus voice telephony. Services will be made possible through the Inmarsat 4 satellites. Likewise, the BGAN service will offer bandwidth of up to 432 kbs and will provide connectivity service to customers outside the current range of mobile satellite communication users.
AGS Wins With Military
Americom Government Services (AGS), a subsidiary of SES Americom, won a contract from the Armed Forces Radio and Television Service to launch a new Pentagon Channel that will broadcast all kinds of infotainment–including information aimed at forces overseas–to Pentagon employees, military and federal personnel, and other interested U.S. consumers. Programming will be broadcasted from the Pentagon to NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, where the signal will be then uplinked and delivered via AGS’ terrestrial satellite communications service facilities and SES Americom’s satellite capacity.
All programming will be in the public domain. The Pentagon is working with cable operators to carry the channel as well.
AGS will manage the end-to-end solution, including the uplink, the fiber, the interconnection and the space segment for the nationwide channel.
ANDREW Appoints Eurosat For Distribution
Andrew Corp. chose Eurosat as its distributor of the company’s small aperture satellite communications antenna products in the United Kingdom and certain European, African and Middle Eastern territories.
Under the distribution agreement, Eurosat will market Andrew’s Channel Master brand antennas, including DTH antennas and electronics, steel and fiberglass antennas and VSAT products.
RADYNE COMSTREAM Selected By Alabama Public TV
Radyne ComStream announced that its Armer Division has been selected by Alabama Public TV to provide and install a digital satellite distribution system for state-wide satellite transmission of HDTV and SDTV PBS programming.
The order is valued at approximately $1 million. The network combines technology and products from Radyne’s Tiernan Video subsidiary and Radyne’s Satellite and Microwave operation. Radyne’s Tiernan Video subsidiary will provide SDTV encoders and both HDTV and SDTV decoders. Video signals will be distributed via satellite using Radyne’s satellite modulators and converters.
BT BROADCAST SERVICES Partners With SES Astra
BT Broadcast Services (BTBS, and SES Astra announce a long-term cooperation contract to promote their respective offerings to independent satellite broadcasters. BTBS will provide the ground segment of the package and SES Astra the space segment, through capacity on the Astra 1G spacecraft.
Through this offer, independent free-to-air and ethnic channels new to the Astra satellite system will be able to grow this market base.
COMTECH EF DATA Partners With Petrex
Comtech EF Data Corp. entered a sales representation agreement with Petrex International. The New York-based company is a manufacturers’ representative firm specializing in the satellite infrastructure marketplace.
The agreement allows Petrex International to sell Comtech EF Data’s satellite communications equipment across the Northeast corridor of the United States. Through this agreement, Petrex will provide support services on Comtech EF Data’s products, including first-level technical support, product solutions and order fulfillment.
COMSAT INTERNATIONAL Wins $20 Million Network Contract
Comsat International Inc. won all three zones it bid in the Compartel 3 project solicitation. The Colombian government, through Compartel, conducted a competitive tender for the installation and operation of a turnkey telecommunications network, which will provide broadband Internet access to locations throughout the country.
The Compartel Program is a six-year initiative to provide telecommunications access to public institutions in Colombia. The project was divided into three phases to support rural telephony, telecenters and broadband Internet access. In particular, the third phase of Compartel was designed to support broadband Internet access for more than 3,700 sites throughout Colombia. The project involves providing a high-speed Internet service together with access LAN support and PCs for local municipalities, schools, hospitals, and military sites in the five regions.
CONNEXION BY BOEING Selects ITS Electronics
Connexion by Boeing selected ITS Electronics Inc. for the design, development and initial production of airborne radio frequency (RF) subsystems for the business aviation market. The engineering and production of the subsystems are part of the Connexion by Boeing and Rockwell Collins agreement to launch Collins exchange mobile Internet access service for operators of business aircraft.
The agreement will pursue mobile real-time, high-speed Internet access communication services for the business traveler. The project will operate through Connexion by Boeing’s terrestrial and satellite network for bringing high-speed intranet, e-mail, and Internet services to aircraft in flight.
CONVERGENT Wins Contract With Merrill Lynch
Convergent Media Systems announced that Merrill Lynch has signed a five-year renewal agreement to be its satellite communication services provider in the United States and Puerto Rico.
Under the terms of the agreement, Convergent will manage the satellite network for Merrill Lynch’s multiple proprietary television channels and distribute content to desktops and conference rooms throughout the company’s executive offices and 600-plus retail branches in the United States and Puerto Rico.
Likewise, Convergent will also deliver market data and competitive information from Merrill Lynch’s proprietary network and Bloomberg TV to the desktops of Merrill Lynch financial advisors. It will also continue to deliver important corporate communications news, education and training to employees through two additional TV channels.
Convergent will provide satellite uplink, signal monitoring, database management, transmission and downlink maintenance services through its network operations center in Alpharetta, GA. The company is responsible for installing, relocating, modifying and maintaining new and existing network equipment at all retail branch locations including downlink earth stations and satellite receivers.
DIGITALGLOBE Signs On The USDA
Digitalglobe won a contract from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to update the agency’s ortho-imagery base program. Under the contract, Digitalglobe will provide 2- foot resolution, ortho-rectified, 1:12,000 Digital Ortho Quadrangles using QuickBird imagery. The images were collected while the satellite was over two sites in Alaska that cover about 2,167 square miles.
GLOBECOMM Secures Follow-on Contract
Globecomm Systems Inc. inked a follow-on contract from an existing, unidentified customer for $1.9 million. The first contract, signed in July 2003, was worth $8.3 million and was sought by what has been described as a "global multilateral organization" that is using the gear for fixed and transportable earth-station terminals. The contract included $26.7 million in follow-on options. With this deal, the company has exercised about $9 million in follow-on options thus far.
ND SATCOM Wins SNG Contract
ND SatCom won a contract to equip the Turkish Dogan Media Group with a new Satellite News Gathering (SNG) fleet consisting of a total of seven Mercedes Sprinter vehicles.
The SNG fleet, based on ND SatCom’s product classicSNG, is designed with fast, high-quality news gathering for digital and/or analog transmissions in mind. The ND SatCom classicSNG is valued for its high degree of functionality and quality.
DHA, an associated company to Dogan Media Group, acts as content provider. A further affiliate, Galaxy Teknik, is consigned with the operation of the fleet and will be in charge of the project management.
UDCAST Contracts With Spain’s Flash 10
UDcast’s satellite aware IP appliance, the UDgateway, has been chosen by Spanish telecom operator Flash10 and satellite service provider Divona to ensure performances for a leading digital divide project in Spain. Tasked with deploying a broadband infrastructure network and IP services to residential users, SMEs and public enterprises in over 317 towns and villages in Catalonia, Spain, Flash10 decided to deploy satellite connections combined with WiFi hotspots.
VIASAT Receives Follow-on Order
Viasat Inc. received a follow-on order for an additional 85 airborne modems from Connexion by Boeing. These modems are being ordered to grow the Connexion by Boeing network, now serving seven airlines that are either under contract or intending to offer the real-time, high-speed in-flight Internet service to their passengers. Deliveries of the modems from this order are scheduled to begin in early 2005.
WEIDA Signs With China Telecom
Weida Communications Inc.’s operating partner Guangzhou Weida Communications Ltd. signed a strategic cooperation agreement with China Telecom under which Weida will offer its satellite transmission equipment and network as part of a disaster-recovery program and backup system for China Telecom’s major accounts. It also will furnish Internet capability.
MOBILE SATELLITE VENTURES Develops New L-band Terminal
Mobile Satellite Ventures (MSV) and Hughes Network Systems Inc. (HNS) have entered into a manufacturing contract to develop a new L-band satellite terminal that will operate over the MSV mobile satellite network.
The terminals will have several new features, including GPS functionality, smaller antenna size and a compact handset that can support both voice and dispatch radio services.
The GPS functionality will give MSV customers the ability to offer location-based services, enabling public safety and other users to automatically track the location of their vehicles. The new terminals are scheduled for general availability in the fourth quarter of 2005. (Mobile Satellite Venutures, 10802 Parkridge Blvd., Reston, VA, 20191; Tel: 877/678-2920; Fax: 703/ 390-2770; Web: http://www.msvlp.com.)
QUINTECH Releases New Amplifier
Quintech Electronics and Communications Inc. announced its release of the AMP 2150 series of adjustable gain L-band amplifiers. Designed for the 950-2150 MHz frequency band, the AMP 2150 series provides controlled bandwidth and DC path continuity for multiple receiver installations. The Amp 2150 has adjustable gain via front panel potentiometer. They are available as a single unit in a weatherproof extruded aluminum housing or up to four units in a one RU chassis. (Quintech Electronics and Communications Inc.; Tel: 724/349- 1412; Fax:724/349-1421; Web: http://www.qecinc.com.)