Category Archives: Technology

New L2oS Solution Lands iDirect a Finalist Spot for MEF 2016 Excellence Award

Metro Ethernet Forum (MEF) recently announced the finalists for the MEF 2016 Excellence Awards, and among the 36 companies named, was iDirect.

The MEF is a global industry association composed of the world’s leading telecommunications service providers, focused on the implementation of Carrier Ethernet services. In support of promoting interoperability and deployment of Carrier Ethernet worldwide, iDirect recently launched a major innovation, one that is also a significant step toward MEF’s vision: Layer 2 over Satellite (L2oS).

MEF’s expert panel of judges honored our L2oS technology as a finalist for the category of Third Network Technology Solutions Awards. As the only satellite communications-related vendor in the list, iDirect appreciates the recognition for how L2oS will enable service providers to use Ethernet Virtual Connections to create more agile satellite networks.

Traditionally, satellite does not transport full Ethernet frames over the air because of the additional burden on scare bandwidth, thus isolating satellite networks from the rest of the terrestrial infrastructure. Instead, propriety techniques economize packets by stripping the Ethernet headers and retaining the payload for transmission. This loss of information breaks the Layer 2 adjacency, isolating satellite networks from the rest of the terrestrial infrastructure. Read More

The Three [New] A’s in Global MilSatcom

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

The nights are drawing in, the mornings are becoming crisp and there’s a definite autumnal feel to the weather as I walk through the London streets. To me, this always means that Global MilSatcom is once upon us. Global MilSatcom is the premier event in the global MilSatcom community, with updates from around the world, some great speakers, new technologies, and doubtless some technological and commercial announcements from the VSAT industry.

In previous blogs, I’ve talked about the core ARC requirements for MilSatcom: Affordability, Resilience and Capability and these are just as relevant now. The crises management will be a combination of ad hoc and longer-term measures. In many part of the world, governments, NGOs and MoDs will continue to fight to solve the humanitarian problems, and stop terrorism at its root in the conflict areas and in-country. That’s where capability and resiliency come in and become an integral part of the solutions for MoDs. For these operations, government agencies need assets on land, sea and in the air. Longer-term solutions are problem resolution in problematic regions and nations stabilizing again at political, social and economic levels such as education, elections, health care, human rights and economic development. These will go hand-in-hand with installing border security networks and training police and defense agencies to maintain security.

This is where Affordability comes in and I also predict three new A’s as well; Antennas, Aviation and Autonomy – the three subjects which I think will provide some noteworthy advances in the coming year.

Antennas are becoming smaller, more efficient and much more discreet. I expect to see a revolution in the coming years, especially in mobile and aeronautical antenna systems. Aviation is a hot topic and it is still proving to be the next big market for expansion. The recent GX Aviation global tour was a groundbreaking demonstration of the art of the possible. Autonomy is another hot topic and the world of autonomous vehicles is very much in the defence world to stay with the MAST project and the Unmanned Warrior Exercise. Read More

Optimizing Your Network for Performance and Efficiency

Ever-increasing business and personal connectivity demands continue to take service expectations to a new level. In mobility markets like super yacht and luxury cruise, or for high-end enterprise like oil & gas, the service imperative has transformed to accommodating more people on the network at all times running bandwidth-intensive applications.

With it, the message to satellite service providers has become clear: Deliver a service that allows for more—more people, more devices, and more applications.

Helping to meet this imperative, iDirect has debuted next-generation technology that takes efficiency and performance to new levels, all with the ability to leverage their current investment in iDirect technology.

iDirect's Universal Line Cards (ULCs)On the efficiency side it starts with our next-generation Universal Line Cards, iDirect’s most powerful to date. The ULC-R (return line cards) will feature aggregate symbol rates up to 29Msps, with individual carriers up to 15Msps. These levels are significantly higher performance beyond iDirect’s other line cards and have room to grow as we add more waveform capabilities to the system. Future capabilities of the ULC-R also feature 16QAM MODCODs for improved efficiency.

The ULC-T (transmit line cards), on the other hand, support DVB-S2/ACM and also higher, more efficient MODCODs such as 32APSK as well as embedded pre-distortion. This helps customers realize new gains in efficiency and performance when operating on transponders closer to saturation. The ULC-Ts are compatible with the existing hub equipment, yet are future proof with DVB-S2X readiness being able to support up to 125 MHz bands at much higher MODCODs.

These new features are complementary to iDirect’s existing bandwidth efficiency features such as smaller roll-off factors as well as inbound phase tracking, and adaptive waveform enhancements that allow for optimal carrier spacing and adaptability to save bandwidth. Coupled with the availability of higher MODCODs and additional FEC rates, each of these efficiency gains permits greater throughput on the same amount of bandwidth. This ultimately increases profitability or lowers total cost of ownership via OPEX savings.

iDirect's High Performance 9-Series Satellite Remotes

Complementing performance gains on the hub side is the 9350 on the remote side. Targeted at high-end commercial mobility and defence markets, the rack-mounted 9350 is the fastest iDirect TDMA remote to date with over 150 Mbps of aggregate throughput with DVB-S2 and Adaptive TDMA, and a path to well over 200 Mbps with Adaptive SCPC. The 9350 also features a multi-core processor, Gigabit Ethernet links, dual demodulators, and an LCD display. Read More

A Holistic Approach to Networking Solutions

At iDirect, we are providing you the building blocks that will enable you to adopt a solutions-oriented approach that transforms your network. Advancements such as transparent IP transport, improved network architectures, optimized service fulfillment, and end-point intelligence are helping you step toward carrier-class quality and service agility. Watch as Eric Watko, iDirect’s VP of Integrated Solutions and Space Systems, discusses with Adam Bennett, Product Marketing Manager, our commitment to improving the entire end-to-end network.

For more information, read the digital feature Plug In, Play On.

Inmarsat and VT iDirect Form Joint R&D Partnership to Develop Next Generation Services

New agreement supports Inmarsat ‘building block’ development strategy

Inmarsat-iDirect-logosInmarsat and VT iDirect announced an extension of their long-term strategic partnership with the formation of a joint research & development (R&D) team – i2 – to support the development of the next generation satellite communications (satcom) technologies. This venture is a logical next step in the Inmarsat and VT iDirect relationship, having worked successfully together over the past four years to develop the GX program.

The R&D project team, which will be based at Inmarsat’s headquarters in London, will focus on the proof-of-concept and prototype phases for new satcom technologies. Inmarsat and VT iDirect will jointly assess the commercial potential of each new technology before the decision is taken to deploy it in the form of a new product or service. Both companies’ partners and end-users will enjoy privileged access to the new technologies.

Among the first projects the team will address are the creation of new solutions to support the growing integration of satcom and terrestrial networks, the requirement for smaller, more powerful satcom terminals, and the boosting of waveform performance.

“This is a highly practical relationship with the objective to deliver a continual flow of market-leading new technologies,” said Michele Franci, Inmarsat’s Chief Technology Officer. “Inmarsat and VT iDirect have been close partners for many years, and we share a common vision of the future development of satellite communications – particularly its growing integration with terrestrial networks. It makes complete sense to combine our resources and capabilities in this way. Read More

iDirect Establishes Engineering and Innovation Centre in Ireland

Satellite ground infrastructure provider will tap into technology-rich Killarney region to create more than 30 specialized engineering jobs over the course of five years

VT iDirect Ireland OfficeHerndon, Va. July 5 – 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 it will establish an Engineering and Innovation Centre in Killarney, Ireland. The facility will help to create new engineering jobs in a technology-rich region of the world. iDirect is a world leader in satellite-based IP communications technology.

The project is supported by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation through Industrial Development Agency (IDA) Ireland.

With existing technology development centers located in Ottawa (Canada), Singapore, Cranfield (UK) as well as Herndon (US), iDirect expands its global engineering innovation footprint to a country that is rich in skilled information communications technology (ICT) professionals. According to IDA Ireland, the country’s inward investment promotion agency that promotes foreign direct investment into Ireland through a wide range of services, Ireland today employs more than 37,000 in ICT and is the home to nine of the world’s top-10 companies in this industry.

iDirect established its presence in Ireland following its 2014 acquisition of intellectual property (IP) from locally based Altobridge. The IP acquired from the small-cell company focused on 2G and 3G solutions for cellular backhaul, is today integrated into existing iDirect solutions that enable the cellular backhaul market—a fast-growing market for VSAT service providers, driven by the need for mobile operators to extend their service offering into new geographical areas to capture greater revenue. Read More

Building True Service Agility Across Your Network: What You Need to Know

The ability to offer high-speed data rates and make efficient use of bandwidth is essential to meeting rising customer expectations. But today it takes more than that ─ it means enabling dynamic, flexible services that can be turned on rapidly and adjusted on demand across the entire global network. iDirect provides the technology building blocks to support true service agility at every point in the process from network implementation to unified services to optimized service fulfillment.

Learn more in our latest Digital Preview Feature “Plug In, Play On.”  

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Plug In, Play On: Check out new iDirect innovations that will bring you true service agility.

In our latest Preview Feature you’ll see how iDirect innovations are enabling dynamic service delivery that will lead toward higher revenue, lower operational costs and greater overall opportunity.  

  • See how new Layer 2 over Satellite (L2oS) is expanding flexibility in how networks are built, enabling greater integration of satellite connectivity into the end-to-end delivery model.
  • Learn more about how iDirect Verified Designs are ensuring that services and functionality on the satellite side successfully carry through on the terrestrial side.
  • Watch how iDirect’s Embedded Computing (EC) remotes series combines iDirect technology with best-in-class third-party applications to create a powerful one-box solution to support greater capabilities from a single remote site.
  • Read More

New Digital Feature Previews Performance And Efficiency Enhancements

When it comes to planning and ensuring your long-term growth, iDirect’s innovations are forging the most intelligent path forward today.

For starters, a whole new wave of more than a dozen iDirect technologies and products dedicated to maximizing performance and efficiency are coming your way.  See them all now up close in our Digital Preview Feature “Dial it Up”.

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See how you can dial up your performance and efficiency.

This new feature includes video interviews, product overviews and interactive charts that provide real-time insight into the development that’s ensuring iDirect customers are ready to dial up their DVB-S2 performance and prepare for the next level of throughput with DVB-S2X.

Here’s just a sample of what you’ll see and learn in the new Preview Feature:

  • Details on our two-step strategy for finding your path toward migrating to DVB-S2X at the right time for your organization, enabling you to maximize current hub investments and minimize the need for expensive dual-illumination.
  • A first look at our next-generation, high-powered line cards ─ with higher performance, higher MODCODs and DVB-S2X ready.
  • What the new 9-Series high-performance remotes, the fastest TDMA remote in iDirect history, will mean for you and your business.
  • The many benefits of a new family of Embedded Computing (EC) remotes.  See how iDirect technology is joining with best-in-class third-party solutions from partners including Cisco®, XipLink™, Sevis® and others to open doors to delivering new, specialized services and more.
  • Read More

Marlink Provides Satellite Connectivity For MSC Cruises

From Via Satellite

MSC Cruises has worked together with Marlink to launch a next-generation connectivity marlink blogsolution for its fleet with multi-band VSAT services. Working with Marlink, MSC Cruises will provide dynamic bandwidth to its 12 existing ships as well as the next-generation ships currently under construction, including MSC Meraviglia and MSC Seaside.

Marlink is installing a multi-band satellite communications solution that combines capacity on new Ku-band High Throughput Satellite (HTS) and traditional Ku-band widebeam satellites. The upgrade builds on MSC Cruises existing VSAT network with new high throughput modems and a network configuration designed to handle larger amounts of capacity from different satellite operators.

The new satellite solution will be able to accommodate seasonal fluctuations in order to optimize MSC Cruises’ global dedicated “cloud of bandwidth.” This latest service upgrade also includes Marlink’s satellite back-up services for MSC Cruises offices on shore, and integration of terrestrial services for improved redundancy. Continue >

One Box Solutions: Extending Cisco® Services with the X7-EC

One Box Solutions: Extending Cisco® Services with the X7-EC

Satellite service providers must bring sophisticated networking capabilities to the customer end site to meet rising customer expectations. Enterprise requirements might include running multi-tenant networks, terminating Layer 2 services, routing for disaster recovery, and providing sophisticated data and network management.

iDirect’s X7-EC embedded computing remote allows service providers to achieve all these activities through the ability to deploy Cisco IOS® software at the network edge.

The Cisco 5921 Embedded Services Router (ESR) supports enterprise routing protocols for advanced end point management across an iDirect Evolution® Layer 2 over Satellite (L2oS) network. It’s equivalent to placing a Cisco routing box at the customer premise to create a natural demarcation for managed services.

The service provider is able to reinforce their VSAT networks with the same global-standards, exceptional reliability and security they find in terrestrial networks. And as satellite plays an increasingly important role in enabling the Internet of Things (IoT) across the globe, the introduction of the Cisco 5921 ESR to the VSAT market brings an effective solution for managing all end points across the VSAT network.

“iDirect is offering the Cisco 5921 ESR as one of the first deliverables of our partnership as a Cisco Solution Technology Integrator (STI). As the satellite industry continues to adopt industry networking standards and support seamless services end-to-end, this combination of our iDirect X7 Remote with a Cisco Router in a single box satisfies demand for more capabilities at customer sites in a cost-effective, highly efficient manner,” says Eric Watko Vice President, Integrated Solutions and Space Systems, iDirect. Read More