Category Archives: Technology

The Satellite Transformation – Demand for Connectivity

There’s an important transformation occurring in the satellite communications industry today. Demand for connectivity is surging and satellite operators are rapidly responding by launching massive amounts of new bandwidth – a number that is expected to increase tenfold by 2025 – which in turn is revolutionizing the economics of satellite service to be on par with, and even complement, terrestrial and wireless networks.

The satcom industry is already seeing major growth in core mobility markets such as aviation, maritime and defense, as well as new ones like connected vehicles and smart cities. To seize existing and future opportunities, ground infrastructure companies must pursue parallel innovations to serve these high-bandwidth applications and make satellite networks easy to deploy and manage.

VT iDirect is leading the way through a wave of new innovation when it comes to satellite ground infrastructure technology. Watch this video to learn how we are expanding the capabilities of the iDirect platform to turn our vision for satellite to play a larger role in the end-to-end network and drive major expansion in market growth into reality.

For more information, visit www.IntelligentPathForward.com.

VT iDirect Enlists MASTER to Support Brazil Customers

Sao Paulo-based satellite service center for distribution and localized support.

Herndon, Va., July 5, 2017VT 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 MASTER, a main provider in Brazil for specialized services and integrated solutions for communications via satellite, has been selected as an authorized distributor of iDirect products and will provide localized support to iDirect partners throughout Brazil. With this partnership, iDirect customers will be able to receive new products and aftermarket services more effectively. Based in Sao Paulo, MASTER will carry a full portfolio of iDirect remotes and ODUs, as well as provide expedited fulfillment, installation and support of satellite services and solutions.

“By adding the resources of MASTER to our local team in Brazil, our customers can receive new products and aftermarket services much more effectively,” said Rob Kilroy, Regional Vice President, Sales, Americas, VT iDirect. “MASTER comes to the partnership with a strong reputation in Brazil and is the main provider of specialized services and integrated solutions for communications via satellite in Brazil.”

“The need for satellite connectivity is surging in Brazil, and service providers demand rapid order fulfillment and services,” said JC Mendonça, Partner Owner, Technical Director, MASTER. “We are excited to help grow the on-the-ground team in Brazil, getting iDirect products to market and supporting local customers as they expand their operations.”

A SQEP in the Right Direction…

Dave DavisBy Dave Davis, Sr. Systems Engineer, VT iDirect

Last week saw IET MilSatcom 2017 come to London. It was a fantastic event with big hitters from industry, Ministry of Defence (MoD) and academia joining together to share a vision of the future of MilSatcom in the near and medium term.

It was also the first time the event incorporated a second day with a series of workshops on day 1. The workshops provided an opportunity to discuss threats, countermeasures, management and spectrum issues. The workshops produced some interesting takeaways:

  • There is the potential for over-reliance on MilSatcom
  • There is a lack in training to be able to operate in a denied or degraded environment
  • There is a lack of suitably qualified and experienced personnel (SQEP) in the military
  • Effective management is key

Reliance is a big factor in MilSatcom. Yes, there is a built-in resilience and technology is far more reliable than it once was, but could a modern battlefield commander operate without MilSatcom providing the large data rates required? Training in a degraded environment is key to understanding how the systems operate under stress and what contingencies are there. There is still a requirement for non-Satcom, i.e., HF capability and an ability to fall back where required. Luckily there is a plethora of Satcom available, so if MilSatcom is denied or degraded, having another satellite system available is likely, but data rates will probably be reduced. Read More

iQ Desktop Remote and Intelligent Gateway Offer Significant Boost in Performance and Efficiency

iDirect iQ Series Desktop Satellite RemoteDVB-S2X product suite achieved 5.7bps/Hz in record-setting over-the-air (OTA) testing, now being deployed in large-scale fixed networks

Herndon, VA, May 22, 2017 – 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 the start of live testing of its new iQ Desktop remote, Intelligent Gateway and DVB-S2X software (iDX 4.0) in large-scale fixed networks. This launch phase follows the recently conducted Over-the-Air (OTA) tests of the iQ Desktop with Inmarsat, Intelsat and SES, consistently achieving efficiency gains of 5.7 bps/Hz. iDirect will showcase its DVB-S2X product suite at CommunicAsia in Singapore from May 23 – 25. Please visit us at stand IP3-01.

The iQ Desktop supports a full range of DVB-S2X MODCODS up to 256APSK 3/4 and aggregate throughput up to 200 Mb/s. The initial release of the iQ Desktop is targeted for large-scale fixed networks for broadband, education and enterprise applications. Through a software upgradeable design, the iQ Desktop enables service providers to license additional throughput and mobility capabilities to meet growing end-user needs, while extending the deployment life of the remote.

With the Intelligent Gateway, iDirect introduces a more cost-effective way to scale teleport and hub-side infrastructure through virtualization. Now supporting DVB-S2X outbound carrier throughput greater than 500 Mb/s, the Intelligent Gateway provides a 10x improvement in Protocol Processor (PP) density and performance while future proofing the gateway infrastructure for large-scale network growth. Read More

The Promises of VSAT Network Programmability

Dynamic-Services-the-post

Satellite service providers are being challenged by the demand for value-added services, the increasing complexity of networks, and increasing operational costs. These three forces are creating an environment where service providers have unlimited potential for growth, but the cost structure to sustain that growth means the opportunity is becoming less profitable.

The VSAT industry needs a new approach to resolve this situation, one offered through Software Defined Networking (SDN) and Network Function Virtualization (NFV). Since adopting network programmability means embracing automation and virtualization, it Download The Birth of Dynamic VSAT Services White Paperpromises to satisfy the forces by:

  1. Improving agility for supplying value-added services,
  2. Making network complexity manageable, and
  3. Achieving this while reducing operational cost.

Each of these outcomes are critical to future success and they are logically linked to each other. If the complexity is better managed, then companies become more agile. Better agility also boosts productivity, which leads to a reduction in expenses.

Network programmability encourages business to focus on investing in infrastructure solutions that lead to dynamic service capabilities and a reduction in operating expenses (OpEx). Read More

3 Important Forces Impacting VSAT Providers

Dynamic Services - Blog Header - 600x179

Terrestrial telecommunication is steadily embracing network programmability, with all the major terrestrial carriers incorporating Software Defined Networking (SDN) and Network Function Virtualization (NFV) as core strategic efforts to build more agile networks.

The same forces encouraging terrestrial companies to adopt network programmability also apply to satellite service providers. These forces are summarized by the demand for value-added services, the increasing complexity of networks, and increasing operational costs.

Download Dynamic Services White Paper

Download Dynamic Services White Paper

#1 – Demand for Value-Added Services

Telecommunications companies consistently rank customer experience management as the highest strategic priority to maintain differentiation over competitors. End users demand customer-centric approaches, so companies able to deliver highly tailored solutions while also reducing time to market not only achieve the best service offering, they gain a true competitive advantage.

In contrast, end users traditionally experience satellite communication as a cumbersome solution with limited options. Until satellite service providers become more agile and improve responsiveness, they will always be relegated to be an access technology of last resort. With an expected doubling of connected devices, the winners of this booming growth will be those companies that can meet emerging market requirements and quickly ramp deployment of services.

#2 – Increasing Network Complexity

Satellite communication has survived global economic slowdowns and the spread of cellular services. This consistent growth is projected to continue and may even accelerate given decreasing service costs and faster data rates. And the demand for value-added services is driving satellite service providers to aim for the same level of sophistication as traditional telecommunication companies.

Every additional site and each new service capability adds burden to the staff. But this burden is not merely linear… the more complex the network, the more exponential the curve. Every additional router, switch, line card, and remote multiplies interconnections to maintain. Enterprise firewalls and intrusion protection devices must be physically installed and configured per business customer. And the sheer number of users on a consumer network overwhelms any but the most streamlined operations. Read More

Talia Announces “OnDemand” Business Continuity Service Built on iDirect’s Satellite Platform

High-Speed VSAT network to provide backup for fiber connectivity, targeted at growing Middle East market

Cabsat, Dubai UAE  – 21st March 2017, Talia has introduced a business continuity service that will be built on iDirect’s satellite ground infrastructure platform. Talia OnDemand has been designed for organisations operating in regions where fixed line services can be unreliable or where occasional use, backup, redundancy or disaster recovery solutions are required.

iDirect and Talia at CABSAT 2017

iDirect and Talia at CABSAT 2017

The service will initially focus on the Middle East and African regions, which represents the most promising VSAT growth opportunities in the world. Improved service economics, enabled by High Throughput Satellites, will make satellite connectivity more competitive to alternative solutions and increasingly part of the global end-to-end network.

The Talia OnDemand service is powered by ConnectPlus, the Talia designed and developed, patent pending connectivity solution working in conjunction with the iDirect Satellite Platform. ConnectPlus is a network edge appliance connecting a customer’s network to the Talia OnDemand service.

“Today, uninterrupted Internet connectivity is an essential requirement to the success of organisations,” said Jack Buechler, Vice President, Business Development, Talia. “By building our OnDemand service on the iDirect platform, we are leveraging iDirect’s industry-best technology to deliver the reliable performance our customers require when it comes to running their core operations.” Read More

Satellite 2017 Wrap Up

This year’s Satellite show was a major hit. The industry’s clearly buzzing with opportunity. And we were thrilled to meet with so many of our customers around the world and discuss how we can help them grow. The highlight was talking with customers about our Intelligent Path Forward platform strategy, and how it provides an all-access pass to the performance and efficiency that DVB-S2X offers.

We had our iQ Remote on display so our customers could get a closer look and learn how it can help capture expanding market opportunities. We showcased the Intelligent Gateway appliance, the powerhouse processor that has the hub density required to better manage IT expenses and drive our customers’ large-scale network growth. And iDirect Government also unveiled their 9-Series Airborne Satellite Remote to enhance their 9-series portfolio.

The week was filled with major announcements and partnerships. We’re already in the midst of over-the-air testing our DVB-S2X technology with leading satellite operators partners like Intelsat and Inmarsat, and we are achieving industry-best performance and efficiency results. Kymeta announced the world’s first truly flat panel antenna that will traditional satellite dishes and integrate with our modem technology. And we showcased the programmable ASIC chip we co-developed with SatixFy that powers our iQ Series remotes and will support and enable future functionality like beam hopping.

Thanks to all of you who met with us to talk about the future of our industry and how we can continue to collaborate to advance your business. Please enjoy this video recap and thank you for your continued partnership.

The New Normal: Satellite’s Collaborative Answer to Cyber Threats

From Via Satellite

As the cyber threat landscape intensifies for satellite operators and the world at large, Via Satellite examines how the industry is tackling the issue on multiple levels. To stay ahead of the threat, manufacturers, operators and customers all must band together, increase their vigilance and collaborate more closely.

Cybersecurity concerns continue to dominate headlines as one of the most far-reaching cross-industry threats facing an interdependent digital world. With space becoming more contested than ever before, the threat to space-based assets is growing.

Increasingly, operators, satellite manufacturers and the organizations they serve are coming together to fight the threats to their networks from a dizzying array of actors from lone-wolfs to well-funded nation-states.

The stakes are high, considering that much of the world’s critical infrastructure rides over satellites, whether the applications involve defense systems, environmental monitoring, broadcasting, financial services or communications. In the context of this threat, Via Satellite talked to a number of satellite industry experts on how they see cybersecurity preparedness occurring in their markets, and how they define the “new normal” as the industry evolves to counter these threats.

Advisory firm PwC in its annual Global State of Information Security Survey 2016 noted that the number of security incidents across all industries rose by 38 percent in 2015 — the highest-ever increase in the 12 years since the global study was first published.

In October 2016 a prolonged Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) attack shut down many major websites in the United States and Europe. The type of attack involves hackers flooding a website with traffic so it can’t handle visits from ordinary web users.

These developments underscore an escalating problem for companies globally, including satellite firms. Read More

Inmarsat and VT iDirect partner on next generation DVB-S2X technology for Global Xpress

Highest throughput rate recorded over the GX network in first round of over-the-air testing

Inmarsat-iDirect-logos23 February 2017: Inmarsat, the leading provider of global mobile satellite communication services, has announced a significant advance in the on-going development of its Global Xpress (GX) high-speed, global, mobile broadband platform.

In conjunction with VT iDirect, Inmarsat’s strategic technology partner for the GX platform, over-the-air tests of iDirect’s next-generation DVB-S2X technology achieved a forward channel throughput rate of 330 Mbps over a live Inmarsat GX satellite in orbit. The successful tests were conducted in January 2017 and leveraged iDirect’s next-generation iQ Series modem.

GX entered global commercial service at the end of 2015 and has already been adopted by major private and public sector organisations across the world as their new standard for seamless, reliable broadband connectivity.

“These tests demonstrate Inmarsat’s commitment to the continuing development of our GX platform, which will be supported by our next generation of satellites, which are already under construction” said Michele Franci, CTO of Inmarsat. “It is important to note that these results were not achieved in laboratory conditions but over a live GX satellite in orbit. We will be able to increase the capabilities of the world’s first, globally available high-speed broadband network and meet the ever escalating bandwidth demands of users.

“Our partnership with iDirect and the deployment of their DVB-S2X technology is key to enhancing the user experience of our GX customers; delivering even greater performance and maximising the commercial and operational benefits of their high-speed broadband connectivity. For example, it is a key enabler for the replacement of expensive airline InFlight-Entertainment systems (IFE) with more capable light-weight, connected streaming solutions that ensure all passengers on even the largest widebody aircraft can access streaming simultaneously.” Read More