Category Archives: Product

A Behind-the-Scenes Look at iDirect’s Next-Generation Technology Strategy

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A programmable ASIC chipset is the power inside iDirect’s next-generation DVB-S2X remote portfolio called the iQ Series.

As the satellite industry dramatically shifts into a new era, our future is more important than ever. And the issues our industry faces need entirely new answers.

How do satellite operators advance their business models to monetize the explosion of capacity coming online? How do service providers keep pace with throughput rates, and even race ahead of what end users demand today? How do service providers and operators build out massive networks without the traditional cost model that can make satellite communication a capex- and opex-intensive endeavor?

iDirect has begun to answer these questions with the introduction of our next-generation technology strategy. Two years ago, we embarked a re-design of our ground infrastructure platform to tackle tomorrow’s demands — building on our core product lines so that our customers can meet future opportunities while protecting their investment in iDirect technology.

The Intelligent Path Forward

Our strategy focuses on unleashing the potential of today’s High Throughput Satellites (HTS) as well as interoperating with coming generations of satellites that will feature new architecture designs and flexible payloads.

The cornerstone of this new strategy is our advanced, programmable ASIC chipset, engineered to take full advantage of the DVB-S2X standard and enhanced for iDirect’s highest performing Adaptive TDMA waveform.

The ASIC chipset is the powerful intelligence inside iDirect’s next-generation DVB-S2X remote portfolio called the iQ Series, which is targeted for broadband, enterprise and mobility applications and packaged in desktop, board level and rack-mount form factors.

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Introducing the iQ Desktop remote, the first version in iDirect’s next-generation iQ Series remote portfolio that is engineered for best-in-class DVB-S2X performance.

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iDirect Partner Perspective: Axesat

Mauricio Segovia - Axesat CEOMauricio Segovia, CEO, Axesat, sits down with iDirect and offers his perspective on the emerging LatAm market, HTS and what’s next in 2017 for Axesat.

iDirect: Please describe Axesat and its role in the emerging LatAm satellite market.

Segovia: Axesat is a multinational company based in Colombia focused on providing solutions that guarantee the best possible service experience to Latin American companies. We have over thirteen years of experience and over 200 employees committed to understanding our customer’s needs to deliver solutions that truly add value to their businesses. We have offices in Colombia, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador and Peru and we also serve the Argentinian, Venezuelan and Central American markets via strategic partners.  We have over 8,000 active satellite links and over 800 clients distributed throughout the region.  Our main goal is to solve the business connectivity needs of companies and telcos in a cost-efficient way.

iDirect: How long have you been an iDirect partner and why did Axesat select its technology?

Segovia: Axesat is constantly looking for the best way to deliver the best solutions to respond to our customer’s needs. Therefore, we continuously look for the best available technologies that allow us to satisfy our customer needs.  In such a process, in 2010, we decided to begin our relationship with iDirect, acquiring the Evolution® platform to complement our existing product portfolio.

iDirect: What verticals do you serve and which services do you offer in your core markets?

Segovia: We have a presence in several verticals.  Not one of the verticals we serve account for more than 10% of our revenues, which together with our geographic reach allows us to weather the storms when a vertical is not doing well.  We have customers in government, oil and gas, energy, mining, infrastructure, retail, banking, and agriculture.  We have developed a complete portfolio of satellite solutions from a deep market understanding of the segments we have a presence in. With our portfolio we offer data, video, voice, backhaul, manage services and trunking solutions to all our core markets. Read More

A Year of Milestones for iDirect and Our Partners

Mary CottonBy Mary Cotton, iDirect Chief Executive Officer

For the past several years in this annual article, I have focused on the emergence of High Throughput Satellites (HTS). I have written about the opportunity for satellite communications to break out from niche technology status to play a larger role in the end-to-end network as global demand for bandwidth explodes.

Well, that opportunity is decidedly here. HTS capacity is filling the skies and opening markets on the ground. As with any type of opportunity, though, meeting demand means raising your game. So in 2016, iDirect made significant progress powering our customers’ innovations and enabling our ground infrastructure platform to capitalize on our industry’s immense opportunities.

Milestones in Delivering Mobility Service

iDirect’s mobility partners made headline news this year as several highly anticipated HTS services built on iDirect became commercially available. Inmarsat GX went live with tremendous success, and Inmarsat immediately realized customer wins across maritime, government, and aviation markets.

In 2016, the first Intelsat EPICNG satellites went into service, making HTS capacity available for commercial shipping vessels and tankers operating in the North Atlantic, as well as for cruise ships and other leisure vessels in the Caribbean. And 2016 saw the successful launch and adoption of Telenor’s THOR 7 satellite, which provides HTS coverage over European shipping lanes.

iDirect supported several more partners in launching and expanding their mobility networks this year. Marlink signed up for capacity with both Inmarsat and Intelsat, making its move into HTS-based services. iDirect partnered with SES to launch their Maritime+ service, which represents its first Ka-band maritime offering. Speedcast expanded their global maritime network on the iDirect platform. And Globecomm launched a high-capacity satellite service for fixed and mobile assets on a global basis.

We are excited to see continued innovation in the mobility market, especially in the antenna industry, where flat panel solutions are opening new opportunities. This year iDirect supported VSAT antenna manufacturer Kymeta in launching a ground-breaking “no dome” antenna for the superyacht market. Kymeta mTenna represents an entirely new class of VSAT technology that can be hand-carried onboard and self-installed on commercial shipping vessels, fishing fleets, and even leisure vessels, creating additional market opportunities. Read More

iDirect’s Next-Generation DVB-S2X Technology Unlocks the Power of the Intelsat EpicNG Platform in Over-the-Air Tests

New iQ Series remote spurs substantial efficiency improvements, approaching 6 bps/Hz  

Herndon, VA, December 13, 2016 – iDirect, a world leader in satellite-based IP communications technology and a company of VT Systems, today announced it has completed a successful round of over-the-air tests on the Intelsat 29e satellite leveraging iDirect’s next-generation iQ Series remote. iDirect’s ground infrastructure platform and iQ Series modem technology combined with Intelsat EpicNG satellites yielded a throughput rate of 5.71 bps/Hz – another demonstration of the up to 330% efficiency performance gains on the Intelsat EpicNG platform. This allows iDirect and Intelsat customers to exploit the full capabilities of the DVB-S2X standard so they can more efficiently meet demands for high-speed bandwidth.

The tests were conducted in Intelsat’s teleports from Oct 26-28, 2016 on the Intelsat 29e satellite, running on an iQ remote installed in Atlanta and iDirect’s new Universal Line Card and Hub chassis installed in Mountainside, MD. The successful tests included the operation of DVB-S2X carriers with 64APSK, 128APSK and 256APSK modulation and coding, and roll-off factors of 5%. The user data tests demonstrated substantial efficiency improvements reaching an industry-leading 5.71 bps/Hz in throughput per remote.

Intelsat NOC

“These milestone tests prove how our goals of higher performance, better economics and simplified access can be achieved in operational networks,” said Mike DeMarco, Senior Vice President, Operations, Intelsat. “With iDirect’s iQ remote technology and Intelsat EpicNG capacity, service providers can transition onto our high performance network while leveraging their existing investment in hub infrastructure. This is an important achievement in enabling our customers to expand their businesses into new applications and geographies and realize their future growth objectives.” Read More

Com & Com Select iDirect Evolution® To Power VSAT Service In Myanmar

Service provider targets growing enterprise, banking and government markets with Ku-band service

Herndon, Va., December 5, 2016 – VT iDirect, Inc. (iDirect), a world leader in satellite-based IP communications technology and a company of Vision Technologies Systems, Inc. (VT Systems), today announced that Com & Com has selected the iDirect Evolution platform to launch a new Ku-band satellite service in Myanmar. Com & Com is a joint venture between satellite service providers OSB Investment and Technology Joint Stock Company (OSB JSC) and Terabit Wave Company, Ltd. With the iDirect-based service, Com & Com will deliver high-speed satellite connectivity to organizations across Myanmar’s enterprise, banking and government sectors.

Myanmar is home to more than 60 million people, many of whom are located in rural and remote regions of the country. Couple this with the fact that few cities are connected to the fiber network, and you have an ideal case for using satellite connectivity in order to bridge the digital divide. Com & Com has set up an iDirect hub in the region to deliver high-quality voice and data services over Ku-band satellite, such as VoIP, VPN internet access, streaming media and data backup. For government agencies, the service will provide secure, private networking from any location, integrating agency operations.

“While Myanmar continues to become a fast-growing area of opportunity for voice and data connectivity, a majority of the country’s population remains out of reach of the core fiber network,” says Theingi Lin, Managing Director, Com & Com. “Satellite technology helps to extend that reach, and iDirect Evolution provides a level of efficiency and scalability that ensures our VSAT service can always grow to meet the dynamic needs of the market. Further, the iDirect platform strongly positions Com & Com for long-term growth with the ability to service a wide range of markets and minimize operational and capital costs.” Read More

iDirect Unveils Powerful DVB-S2X Technology

Revolutionary new ASIC chipset redefines performance and efficiency levels for satellite networks  

Herndon, VA, November 30, 2016 – VT iDirect, Inc. (iDirect), a world leader in satellite-based IP communications technology and a company of Vision Technologies Systems, Inc. (VT Systems), today announced transformational DVB-S2X technology based on a powerful, customized ASIC (Application-Specific Integrated Circuit) chipset that will deliver revolutionary gains in data throughput and will power a new line of DVB-S2/DVB-S2X remotes called the iQ Series. iDirect is also introducing exponentially higher hub processing capabilities and virtualization of core gateway components to offer further gains in performance and efficiency and lower business costs.

iDirect iQ SeriesiDirect’s DVB-S2X solution is the result of a significant investment to co-develop a state-of-the-art ASIC chipset that is customized to exploit the full capabilities of the DVB-S2X standard and optimized for the enhanced iDirect waveform. This next generation of technology will allow iDirect to leverage the benefits of today’s High Throughput Satellites (HTS) and the capabilities of next-generation HTS to unlock additional features of the DVB-S2X standard.

The iQ Series establishes a new model for satellite remote performance providing a future-proof strategy to deliver successive gains in performance and efficiency as network operators strive to keep pace with the launch of increasingly higher throughput  satellites. Remotes can be continually reprogrammed over the air to increase network capabilities and throughput levels, driving a massive expansion of applications and setting new service level standards.

“We are incredibly excited to deliver DVB-S2X capabilities to our partners,” stated Wayne Haubner, Senior Vice President, Engineering & Emerging Technologies. “DVB-S2X represents a major opportunity for network operators to gain greater performance and efficiency to meet escalating user demands and realize lower business costs. We are currently performing over-the-air testing of our new DVB-S2X chipset, and results are demonstrating 500 Mbps of aggregate throughput. This technology will allow us to exceed 1 Gbps of throughput as we keep pace with future satellite developments.” Read More

High Throughput Solutions for High-Priority Defense Applications

As satellites with higher throughput capabilities come online, they bring tremendous promise to military networks – faster speeds for bandwidth-hungry applications like aerial surveillance, and greater bandwidth efficiency for increasingly cost-sensitive communications budgets.

iDirect's High Performance 9-Series Satellite Remotes

Bringing that capacity to market is the focus of iDirect’s latest product lineup, which it’s showcasing at the Global MilSatCom conference in London this week.

Stop by our booth at stand #17 to check out our latest products and hear first-hand how iDirect is advancing satellite connectivity for defense organizations worldwide.

iDirect 980The all-new lineup includes high-performance defense remotes. The 9-series remotes features the 9350 Satellite Router, the fastest iDirect TDMA remote to date, the 950mp Integrated Satellite Router Board for portable communications-on-the-move (COTM) solutions, the 980 Airborne Integrated Satellite Router Board, and the 9800AE and 9800AR Airborne Satellite Routers.

You can read more about the 9-series here.

The new defense remotes bring even greater performance and efficiency when they’re coupled with our next-generation Defense Line Cards, which are critical for operation in an environment of higher throughput satellite capacity coming online. The line cards feature FIPS 140-2 Level 3 security, an onboard TRANSEC module, and conformal coating. In addition, they deliver higher MODCODs and additional FEC rates to improve spectral efficiency in DVB-S2. Read More

All Apps on Board: All Eyes at Sea

Oil rig operators are constantly under pressure to run operations more efficiently and securely. With leasing rates averaging hundreds of thousands of dollars per day, a single minute of disrupted communications is a hefty loss in profits. The key to success is increasing the visibility and speed of collaboration between the rig and headquarters.

iDirect All Eyes at Sea

Today, VSAT networks provide real-time information exchanges between operations at sea and employees back at headquarters. One rising trend is the integrated use of video in day-to-day operations. Today, oil rigs are equipped to support video applications – whether that’s sending live video feeds from an oil rig or from the ocean floor. Furthermore, they’re equipping exploration vessels, workboats, tankers, offshore support vessels (OSVs), production platforms and remote drilling sites with full access to corporate networks.

Add to this the need to support basic corporate networking, crew welfare and bandwidth-heavy data transfer. And consider that oil and gas networks also support ocean-crossing oil tankers and other mobility applications – and suddenly many of today’s VSAT networks are challenged to carry the load.

Enter the newly launched iDirect 9350 Satellite Router. The 9350 is targeted at high-end commercial mobility markets, and initially features up to 150 Mbps of aggregate throughput Adaptive TDMA performance with a software upgrade path to well over 200 Mbps via support for Adaptive SCPC. Read More

All Apps on Board: Meeting Sky-High Expectations for Connectivity

Meet Sky-High Expectations - iDirectYou can barely board a flight these days that doesn’t advertise in-flight connectivity. Commercial airlines are investing more in VSAT for in-flight connectivity to compete for the loyalty of more than one billion annual airline passengers, as well as improve operational productivity in the face of constantly rising costs.

Today, expectations for what a VSAT network can deliver are soaring to a higher level. Passengers want to watch streaming video content and live TV without constant buffering. Further, onboard networks are expanding to support cellular service.

In the cockpit, in-flight connectivity serves a growing set of business needs, such as navigational charting, weather-pattern monitoring and mechanical system monitoring. And connectivity helps ground control stay in control, receiving live feeds from the aircraft to monitor fuel and maintenance needs.

Supporting all these applications demands a faster and more efficient network. Thankfully, High Throughput Satellites (HTS) are answering the call. NSR reports that approximately 18,000 aircraft will be powered by capacity from HTS by 2025, accounting for $2.8 billion in revenue. These numbers are in addition to 8,160 Ku-band units, and nearly 90,000 total VSAT-connected aircraft projected for the same timeframe.

With rising pressure on service providers to meet the airlines’ continual demand for increasing network performance, iDirect has introduced its next-generation aero remote, the CX780. Read More

All Apps on Board: Now Serving More Data

You could say that the superyacht passenger epitomizes the market standard for connectivity these days.

Once these passengers step aboard, their expectation for unparalleled bandwidth, premium VoIP services and 4K video – present in their everyday lives – is just as fervent out at sea.

Now Serving More DataFor the superyacht owner, that means that along with the high-end concierge service, they must be serving more data than ever.

Both passengers and crew want high-speed internet connectivity and access to content like streaming TV. And VSAT networks must support applications such as bridge communications, weather tracking and ship maintenance.

The superyacht segment within maritime has relied on VSAT for many years, and now that reliance levels up a notch. And as traffic demands surge and the number of devices per passenger per ship increases, superyacht owners are upgrading their VSAT networks to support higher-speed and higher-quality service.

A look at the market shows growth ahead. According to Northern Sky Research’s (NSR) Maritime SATCOM Markets, 4th Edition, there will be 8,200 VSAT-equipped passenger vessels by 2025, up from 4,400 reported at the end of 2015. The general leisure maritime market, of which superyacht is part of, remains strong, with new ship orders demanding higher bandwidth options.

Learn what NSR and maritime VSAT leaders are forecasting for the years ahead.

Passenger markets are poised to move over to HTS-based offerings in GEO and Non-GEO, with almost 24 Gbps of demand by 2025, in addition to 79 TPEs of FSS capacity. HTS services are predicated to drive significant adoption with better coverage, more affordable bandwidth and lower-cost equipment. Read More