Brazil to Secure National Communications Through Embraer

Satellite Security NSA

Brazilian National Space Agency (AEB) building. Photo: AEB

[Via Satellite 12-2-13] Visiona Tecnologia Espacial and Telebras formally signed a contract to supply the Defense and Strategic Communications Geostationary Satellite (SGDC) system to the Brazilian government. The $553.4 million contract provides for the satellite system to be delivered by the end of 2016. The project involves the Ministries of Communications, Defense and Science and Technology. Telebras will operate the satellite on the civilian K-band, while the Ministry of Defense will operate on the military X-band.

Visiona is a joint venture of Embraer and Telebras, and will be responsible for integration the SGDC system, which will expand broadband Internet access in remote regions of the country, through the National Broadband Program (PNBL). The company will also ensure Brazil’s control over the communications infrastructure of its armed forces.

Visiona has selected Thales Alenia Space (TAS) to supply the satellite and Arianespace to launch the device. The contract with suppliers also provides for the transfer of technology to Brazilian companies – a task that will be supervised by the Brazilian National Space Agency (AEB).

Satellites that currently provide services to Brazil are either controlled by stations outside of the country, or the attitude control is in the hands of companies run by foreign capital. Both previous frameworks risk the interruption of services in situations of international conflict, or due to the political or economic interests of others. The SGDC will be controlled in Brazil at stations that are located in military areas under the coordination of Telebras and the Ministry of Defense.

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