Category Archives: Market

RigNet’s Express Service Brings Global Xpress to the Energy Market

From Satnews

RigNetThe oil and gas industry has been waiting for this solution—to deliver more capacity and added resiliency in a seamless global platform.

RigNet, provider of digital technology solutions focusing on serving energy facilities, maritime vessels and other global remote locations, announces its launch of Global Xpress (GX) services based on Inmarsat’s globally available, Ka-band, high-throughput satellite (HTS) network.

In 2013, RigNet was selected as Inmarsat’s preferred partner to launch Global Xpress into the oil and gas industry. Global Xpress is the first Ka-Band satellite network from a single operator to deliver a global footprint that supports increased data rates and global mobility, at affordable price points. Whether onshore or offshore, the network architecture allows the use of small footprint antennas that save deck space at a remote location. The GX design simplifies the remote installation process and decreases the time for deployment, while providing consistency in the hardware for ease of sparing and maintenance.

This unique service allows companies to utilize a single satellite platform with global standards across their geographically dispersed organizations. GX delivers a reliable high-speed, seamless connection that gives a better end-user experience than those found in traditional satellite services to the oil and gas industry. The network’s high-throughput and “comms on the move” (COTM) capability makes it a perfect fit for essential applications and crew welfare communications in the oil and gas industry. Whether your application is in drilling, production, energy maritime, or support services, GX has a solution that improves the efficiency of your operations. The service can also boost crew morale through high-speed crew internet, video conferencing and onboard Wi-Fi solutions. Continue>

A Secure 4G/LTE Backhaul Experience Shouldn’t Compromise Throughput

Richard DeasingtonBy Richard Deasington, Director of Market Development at iDirect

Global demand for 4G/LTE services has hit a new threshold. No matter the location—urban, rural or remote—user expectations remain the same: high speed and high quality, no compromise. This means that mobile operators are tasked with building-out networks that meet end-user expectations, yet still ensure privacy of the data being transmitted across the network.

However, this presents a difficult challenge for those that must leverage satellite for remote and rural locations or for emergency response networks. For satellite, achieving this level of security often comes at the cost of speed and efficiency.

Here’s the difficulty: Previous generations of networking technology encryption were provided from the handset to the RNC – within the core network. LTE has changed this configuration, moving the RNC functionality out to the edge of the network. This has been done in order to improve efficiency and reduce the latency. The resulting effect is that now the LTE base station processes the clear text of all traffic.

When it comes to backhauling this traffic to the network, the recommendation by the 3GPP is to carry all traffic from the base station inside an IPsec tunnel back to the security gateway in the core network. This, according to 3GPP specifications, ensures security.

Breaking the Norm

A standard LTE implementation uses IPsec to secure all communications by authenticating and encrypting the data from the LTE eNodeB through the network to the Security Gateway in the EPC. In the past, optimizing this encrypted traffic over a satellite link was not possible as the encryption process scrambled all the information being carried. Read More

Singtel and Inmarsat Announce Strategic Partnership to Strengthen Global Maritime Cyber Security Capabilities

From Inmarsat

Singtel and Inmarsat have entered into a strategic partnership to enhance maritime cyber security using Trustwave’s Unified Threat Management (UTM) solution.

Trustwave, the cyber security arm of Singtel, will provide the software based UTM service to be integrated with Inmarsat hardware onboard ships, to protect data and reduce cyber risk for maritime companies. The UTM service offers a suite of cyber security defences, such as advance firewall, anti-virus, intrusion prevention and web-filtering, which is backed by global round-the-clock support. It will be delivered through Fleet Xpress, the first globally available, high-speed broadband solution for maritime and offshore operators, available from a single communications provider.

Mr Andrew Lim, Managing Director, Business Group, Group Enterprise at Singtel said, “Our partnership with Inmarsat is important as it marks the first phase in rolling out Singtel cyber security services for Inmarsat; starting with maritime. Shipping still moves about 90% of the world’s trade, hence the maritime industry is a significant backbone of the global supply chain. As maritime systems become more digital, it is imperative for the industry to protect data onboard ships against all forms of cyber attacks. Our partnership with Inmarsat will provide maritime companies with a cyber security solution to meet rapidly evolving cyber threats, globally.”

“The landscape of shipping is changing. As we move from traditional shipping into the ship intelligence era, the threat of cyber attacks have never been more real,” commented Mr Ronald Spithout, President Inmarsat Maritime. “Risks from malicious attacks and unlawful access to a ship’s intelligence, its system infrastructure and networks cannot be ignored, and the shipping industry needs to take action.” Continue>

Satellite and the End-to-End Network: The Next Stage of Innovation

By Eric Watko, Vice President, Integrated Solutions and Space Systems, iDirect

The Next Stage of Innovation

Satellite’s role in creating a truly converged end-to-end network is an ongoing industry discussion, and one that continues to generate more conversation with the introduction of new technology innovations and the growing demands that drive them.

Throughout the past few weeks iDirect has engaged in a discussion with Verizon, NSR, BT and Intelsat on the role of satellite in the end-to-end network. Our conversation wraps up this week with Eric Watko addressing the question posed by Intelsat: What are the next steps to innovating around modern networking technology in order for satellite to continue operating right at the heart of IP networks?

Looking back on the past few weeks, we have been engaged in a very enlightening discussion around how we work to make satellite communication technology look and act more like all other access technologies.

  • We were given a glimpse into the telco environment from Verizon and the steps it must take in order to align satellite with its core MPLS network.
  • From there, NSR offered a call-to-action regarding the need to see more advances in the areas of software-defined satellite networks, transitioning out of fixed server hardware and into a virtualized environment.
  • BT Global Services described their efforts to launch satellite networks built on a Layer 2 foundation to support telco trends toward carrier Ethernet.
  • Finally, Intelsat talked about enabling service agility so telecom providers can quickly reach underserved areas.

For iDirect, the answer is clear: We must be able to support the service needs of the industry as a whole. We cannot simply focus on the space segment, but instead examine every aspect—from the edge of the core network, to the terminals, to the endpoint of the customer. Read More

Inmarsat’s Fleet Xpress Launch Marks New Era of ‘Smart’ Ship Operations

From Inmarsat

Inmarsat Fleet Xpress is the first globally available, high-speed broadband solution for maritime and offshore operators, available from a single communications provider. Fleet Xpress enables ship owners and operators to enhance their business intelligence, improve operational efficiency and vessel performance, and provide a host of high-value, crew welfare benefits.

It will also empower third party application providers to enhance their existing services to maritime customers, and to develop a host of innovative new applications that will further drive operational efficiencies, ranging from real-time monitoring, remote diagnostics and telemedicine, to security and crew service management tools, among others.

Ground-breaking service
“Fleet Xpress is a ground-breaking new service that will shape communications at sea beyond recognition,” said Ronald Spithout, Inmarsat Maritime President.

“Through Fleet Xpress, ship owners and operators can experience unparalleled levels of performance and simplicity. Continue>

Boost In Capacity, Avionic Innovations Will Skyrocket IFC Revenues

From Via Satellite

Euroconsult has released a report forecasting that total revenues from passenger In-Flight Connectivity (IFC) services will skyrocket from an estimated $700 million in 2015 to nearly $5.4 billion by 2025, a 23 percent Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) over the 10-year period. A number of factors are contributing to the colossal growth, including the advent of High Throughput Satellite (HTS) systems, the increased use of aircraft connectivity for operational purposes, new entrants in the IFC provider market and a fragmentation of the antenna industry.

The “Prospects for In-Flight Entertainment and Connectivity” report finds that the number of connected commercial aircraft is expected to grow from 5,300 in 2015 to 23,100 by 2025, accounting for 62 percent of the global fleet. While the aeronautical market is highly sensitive to price, particularly in terms of equipment acquisition, installation and bandwidth pricing, which could inject some slow to the projected growth according to Geoffroy Stern, senior consultant at Euroconsult, and editor of the report, the amount of capacity set to enter the IFC market in the near future could work to drive down costs significantly. The launch of both Ka- and Ku-band HTS, which allow data speeds up to 10 times faster than those of regular satellite systems and at significantly lower cost, will trigger this huge jump in capacity.

“HTS systems will not only tremendously increase data speeds to planes  — relative to the speeds offered by regular satellite systems — but do so at a significant lower cost, thereby further driving the adoption of IFC services,” Stern told Via Satellite. “With most existing Ku-band hardware installed on aircraft compatible with future Ku-band HTS systems, thus avoiding additional costs, the adoption of HTS is set to gain significant traction.” Continue >

iDirect Maritime Leadership Campaign Named Best in the Industry for 2015 by Via Satellite

AwardMulti-media program centered on market education and industry engagement wins 2015 Excellence Award for Integrated Marketing Campaign of the Year

VT iDirect was the recipient of the 2015 Integrated Marketing Campaign of the Year award from Via Satellite, as part of the publication’s 2015 Excellence Awards. iDirect’s multi-faceted campaign involved nine partners to educate and engage the global maritime VSAT market on key business and technology trends. The prestigious industry award recognizes the best integrated marketing campaign to bolster a unified message in both online and offline environments.

The iDirect Maritime Leadership Campaign leveraged print and online media, digital publishing, social media and email to generate an industry dialogue on the growing role of VSAT in the global maritime market. After kicking off the campaign with a digital feature as part of the September 2015 issue of Via Satellite, which reached 25,000, iDirect elevated the reach of the message by tapping into its nearly 13,000 followers across social media platforms and almost 14,000 blog subscribers.

A powerful component to the campaign involved the ongoing participation and engagement of iDirect partners Airbus Defence & Space/Marlink, Globecomm, Harris CapRock, Orange Business Services, RigNet, Speedcast, Inmarsat, Intelsat and Telenor. Executives from these market-leading satellite operators and service providers contributed key opinions and insights on current trends and future opportunities through a dedicated four-part blog series, which garnered more than 10,000 views on the iDirect website. Read More

iDirect Next-Generation Ground Infrastructure Powers New OmniAccess Super Yacht and Boutique Cruise VSAT Service

DVB-S2X-ready universal line cards and remotes exceeding 140 Mbps aggregate throughput set new standard for bandwidth aboard luxury ships

Herndon, VA, March 9, 2016 – VT iDirect, Inc. (iDirect), a company of Vision Technologies Systems, Inc. (VT Systems), today announced that OmniAccess, a leading provider of VSAT services to the luxury yacht market, is launching its Broadbeam nextGen VSAT service using iDirect’s latest Evolution technology. OmniAccess will be the first to leverage iDirect’s new DVB-S2X-ready universal line cards and new 9350 satellite remote, which exceeds 140 Mbps aggregate throughput. This next generation VSAT service will meet the ever-increasing demand for connectivity aboard super yachts worldwide. iDirect is a world leader in satellite-based IP communications technology.

A new expectation for connectivity exists amongst luxury super yacht and cruise ship passengers today. Service providers must be able to accommodate multiple devices streaming high-definition video and running voice and data applications, all at a low-cost, high quality level of delivery.

With the debut of its next-generation extreme-throughput VSAT service, OmniAccess will leverage iDirect’s technology developments to introduce Broadbeam nextGen, a new and unique triple-play service offering in the yacht market that will enable HD and UHD/4K PlexusTV streaming, as well as unparalleled bandwidths and premium VoIP services.

Building this next-generation service requires a new level of technology that is equipped to handle an unwavering acceleration of throughput requirements. iDirect’s new Universal line cards is the most powerful to date, with return line cards that will feature aggregate symbol rates up to 30Msps, with individual carriers up to 15Msps and 16QAM MODCODs for improved efficiency. The new transmit line card is software upgradable to DVB-S2X and will feature a powerful combination of 32APSK MODCODs and embedded pre-distortion, which helps OmniAccess realize new efficiency and performance gains when operating on fully saturated transponders. Read More

iDirect Partner Perspective: Integrasys

Alvaro pictureAlvaro Sanchez, Sales Manager, Satellite Monitoring Systems, Integrasys SA, shares news of big customer wins and gives a preview of the next phase in remote commissioning, which the company will unveil at Satellite 2016. Go see them at Booth 118.

iDirect: Please describe Integrasys, and its relationship with iDirect.

Sanchez: Founded in 1990, Integrasys SA is a development, engineering and integration company specializing in the telecommunication and broadcasting markets. We have been a partner with iDirect for three years, delivering our Satmotion Pocket remote commissioning solution to iDirect customers under the name the iDirect Remote Commissioning Solution.

iDirect: Talk about the growing value of a VSAT remote commissioning tool, given the increasing demand for VSAT connectivity in remote and rural regions.

Sanchez: A VSAT commissioning tool streamlines the process to point the antenna, isolate the cross polarization, minimize adjacent satellite interference, perform compression testing, and find the initial transmit power through an intuitive software interface.

Such a solution is highly valuable in setting up networks in remote regions around the world, enabling you to autonomously point and adjust antennas, streamlining the overall commissioning of remotes. This allows service providers to deploy new services quicker, and get customers up-and-running on the network at an accelerated pace with optimal performance.

iDirect: You recently started to work with a few large customers in the maritime and oil and gas (O&G) verticals. Tell us about them.

Sanchez: We have a very significant customer in the maritime industry – our first and biggest! This partner is also working with us on new and exciting developments which we are addressing with a new product release at Satellite 2016. Read More

iDirect Government Unveils New Defense Remotes and Line Cards with Increased Performance and Functionality

Hardware Innovations to Bring Increased Performance to Government Customers

Herndon, Va., March 7, 2016 –iDirect Government (iDirectGov), a leading provider of satellite communications to the military and government, today unveils its next generation 9-Series portfolio of remotes and defense line cards that will bring greater spectral efficiencies and enhanced performance to the company’s government customers.

Riding on the 9-Series remotes is the Evolution 3.4 software that brings the products to life. Each of the remotes within the new series features different form factors and capabilities to accommodate customer specific needs. The entire series of remotes is capable of nearly double the in-route Msps of its predecessor the 8-Series and with almost 10 times the packets per second capability.

Featuring extended frequency ranges, which allow users to access the Wideband Global Satellite (WGS) constellation, as well as High Throughput Satellites (HTS), the 9-Series supports the ability to receive multiprotocol encapsulation (MPE) broadcasts. For secure traffic, the 9-Series will support both one-way and two-way TRANSEC and be certified at FIPS140-2 Level 3.

The series consists of the 950mp, 900 and 9350. The 950mp features a reduced footprint of 33%, uses 55% less power and is 28% lighter than its predecessor the e850mp – all of which is critical in the use of man-portable terminals. The 900 and 9350 remotes include dual demodulators, which allow the remotes to support two separate data streams. Combinations of data traffic can include both two-way and one-way traffic, with one way traffic consisting of multiprotocol encapsulation (MPE) broadcasts or one-way TRANSEC. The 9350 also boasts the first LCD screen on an iDirect remote, allowing the user to view remote’s configuration and statistics. Read More