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Via Satellite January: The Top 10 Quotes

By Veronica Magan | December 18, 2013

      The January issue of Via Satellite celebrates the winners of the first edition of the Via Satellite Excellence Awards. These impressive individuals and forward-thinking companies represent what it takes to succeed in our industry. In this issue we also explore Lockheed Martin’s plans to re-enter the commercial satellite business, in both the manufacturing and launch arenas.

      As a preview, we bring you the top quotes from Via Satellite’s January issue:

      “There is a school, but the curriculum is outdated and the staff under qualified. The most glaring problem is that they were cut off from the rest of the world. It was at that moment that it occurred to me that we are in a position to help make a difference. That difference would be in the form of a satellite link and a wireless network throughout the campus, which would provide free voice circuits, Internet access to provide current lesson plans for the school along with HD video conferencing to be used between the clinic and teaching hospitals here in the United States and abroad.” — Jim Gilbert, CEO, On Call Communications.

      “When I became CEO, Norsat was losing millions of dollars per year, and had significant debt, so it was a sink or swim situation for me as a leader. I had to turn the company around, and so I made a lot of tough decisions to reduce operating expenses. Enacting major change is never easy and I faced a lot of opposition, but it has certainly been worth it.” — Amiee Chan, CEO, Norsat.

      “I remember the first frequency coordination meeting I attended in 1992, from which I came back with- out any progress. At that time, Measat’s prime orbital slot of 91.5 degrees east seemed almost impossible to coordinate. Gradually, I learned to be more realistic in terms of actual usage of satellite parameters and what we try to obtain during coordination procedures. Concurrently, I learned to have a certain degree of flexibility in the design of satellite payloads and antenna to avoid potential incompatibility with adjacent satellites.” — Ali Ebadi, SVP, space systems development, Measat.

      “Baby boomers are beginning to exit the work force. The hardest part is getting in the door. Today the space industry is not as sexy or popular as it was during the space race. Shuttle launches used to be shown on the major news net- works and the entire country celebrated at the giant scientific leaps made by mankind. Now, media tends to focus on failures. … It is up to the engineering community to promote through science and math volunteerism to encourage the next generation.” — Colin Marker, engineering project manager for spacecraft bus, Boeing Satellite Systems.

      “The migration from L-band service to VSAT continues to accelerate and we are finding that even ships with a crew of 20 or 30 are asking for bandwidth levels over 512 Kbps. Three years ago they would have been satisfied with a 64 Kbps service, so this demonstrates the trend for constant connectivity and an exceptional amount of capacity over the major shipping routes. Passenger vessels have moved from a typical 1-2 Mbps to double or triple that level in the past two years.” — Rick Simonian, president, maritime solutions, Harris CapRock Communications.

      “We will continue to develop our core platform for greater scale, throughput and efficiency. One significant area of focus will be developing our next-generation Network Management System. This will be a critical expansion of platform — one that will enable our partners to reach new levels of business and network performance, while giving them innovative tools to continually deliver differentiated value to their customers.” — David Bettinger, CTO, iDirect.

      “We see strong market expansion in 2014 for the Exede live news and events service. … The real potential for market expansion is in the largely unserved live entertainment streaming, which we expect to be an exciting arena in 2014. The next level is to apply the high-capacity Ka-band approach to content distribution as well. The granularity of the spot beam system allows for highly-efficient local content distribution.” — Stefan Jucken, director, strategic business development, ViaSat. 

      “I think that it is important for the government to consider the contractor’s demonstrated ability to deliver quality satellite communication services at cost-effective prices. Selecting a provider solely on the basis of cost (via LPTA) means that the user could suffer significant degradation of capability if that provider does not deliver a product with enhanced, mission-oriented features. There should be more careful thought as to what ‘best value’ means to the end user.” — David Greenhill, president, Satcom Direct.

      “The Australian government has shown interest in continuing to provide support for NBN services going forward. While we do not have any commitment yet, there is a possibility that they will extend the service.” — David Leichner, VP of corporate marketing, Gilat Satellite Networks.

      “It will be a different Lockheed Martin Space Systems company going forward. So, a little bit of it is timing. We need to get our price point down. You will know when we reach that point because we will be winning.” — Linda Reiners, president, commercial ventures, Lockheed Martin Space Systems.