North America News
Telefonica Splits Share of Hispasat Between Eutelsat and Abertis
Telefonica has reached an agreement to sell its 13 percent stake in Spanish satellite operator Hispasat to Eutelsat and Abertis for 101 million euros ($137.02 million), bringing in 47 million euros ($63.76 million) in profit for the telco.
Telefonica initially planned on selling its entire share to Abertis, but Eutelsat exercised its right of first refusal.
Abertis management said the increase would consolidate its position as the main shareholder in Hispasat with a direct stake of 40.6 percent. The acquisition also aims to reinforce Abertis’ ability to grow in the satellite infrastructure sector, specifically on projects in which it can assume an industrial leadership role.
Hispasat Obtains Ex-Im Bank Financing for PURCHASE of Orbital Sciences Satellite
The Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) has granted Hispasat an $87.1 million guarantee of a loan extended by Crédit Agricole and other European lenders. The move will help Hispasat finance the assembly and purchase of a satellite to be manufactured by Orbital Sciences Corporation.
Globalstar Signs Distributor Agreement in the United Kingdom
United Kingdom-based satellite mobile voice, data and tracking services supplier, Global Telesat Communications (GTCL) has signed an updated distributor agreement with Globalstar Europe Satellite Services, a wholly owned subsidiary of Globalstar.
Under the new agreement, GTCL will expand its product offer to include Globalstar’s satellite voice and duplex data solutions, which includes satellite phones, airtime plans and accessories.
Hughes Network Systems Awarded EPA Satellite Broadband Services Contract
Hughes Network Systems has received an order from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to provide satellite broadband services for the agency’s RadNet program. Hughes will provide 50 sites with one year of satellite broadband service.
The Hughes solution includes its HN9000 broadband satellite terminal and a dedicated Access Gateway, supporting expansion and potential conversion into a private network. Hughes will install and deliver satellite broadband services at up to five RadNet locations each month.
The RadNet system monitors radiation levels of air, drinking water, pasteurized milk and precipitation across the United States. The EPA will upgrade its existing network with the addition of Hughes satellite broadband technology during 2013.
Thales Unveils Next Generation MBITR Radio
Warfighter communications systems developer and manufacturer Thales Communications is introducing its next-generation Multiband Inter/Intra Team Radio MBITR2.
The MBITR2 is an enhancement of its small, lightweight, power-efficient multi-band tactical handheld radio line. The product will retain interoperability with existing fielded radios and addresses tomorrow’s requirements for a next generation, wideband, networking handheld radio.
Thomson Video Networks Receives Telenor Multi-Screen Streaming Order
Telenor Satellite Broadcasting (TSBc) has selected the Thomson Video Networks’ ViBE VS7000 multi-screen video platform to deliver streaming services for its key broadcast clients.
The Thomson Video Networks ViBE VS7000 was designed to handle 26 separate services, each formatted, compressed, and ready for multi-screen delivery. The ViBE VS7000, with its integrated management and redundancy system, offers a flexible solution for service expansion. TSBc benefited from this flexibility when its service lineup nearly doubled during the installation phase due to high demand from its customers.
General Dynamics Wins $5 Million Manpack Order from U.S. Army
The U.S. Army has ordered $5 million in new kits to upgrade 100 Handheld, Manpack, Small Form Fit (HMS) AN/PRC-155 two-channel Manpack radios from General Dynamics. The upgrade includes a field-replaceable power amplifier and supporting software, and it will enable secure voice and data communication with the MUOS system, which delivers high-speed voice and data communications and 10-times greater capacity than the military’s current Ultra High Frequency (UHF) satellite communications system.
ITT Exelis Selected by AFRL to Research GPS alternatives
ITT Exelis has been selected by the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) to research the development of a small satellite navigation payload. The $2.15 million contract, will task Exelis with augmenting the current Global Positioning System (GPS) program. The company will begin the work on GPS NAVSAT this month at its facilities in Clifton and Bloomfield, N.J.
Norsat Rolls Out New Solutions Line for Oil & Gas Industry
Norsat International has launched its new M2M (machine to machine) solutions line for the oil and gas industry. The company’s first product, Sentinel RMC, is an all-inclusive equipment and data as a service package that provides global, remote site data monitoring and control in real time.
Orbital Sciences Satellite Celebrates SORCE’s 10th Anniversary in Space
Orbital Sciences is celebrating the tenth anniversary of successful operation for its Solar and Radiation Climate Experiment (SORCE) satellite.
SORCE was launched into orbit in 2003 aboard Orbital’s Pegasus rocket in a mission that originated from Cape Canaveral, Fla. The original plan for the satellite’s mission was to provide continuous solar climate science and Earth atmospheric data for five years.
SSTL Evaluates Small Satellite Approach for Air Force GPS
The Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) has contracted the domestic arm of Surrey Satellite Technology LLC (SSTL) to study the impact small satellites can have over the current GPS constellation. The Air Force is seeking to reduce costs and improve the system’s performance in terms of robustness, coverage and accuracy through this approach.