Walton De-Ice
Editorials
Mission Microwave
BusinessCom

BusinessCom, a leading satellite services and connectivity company, is seeing increasing interest for mobile VSAT hardware and services supporting commercial operations, government/military, maritime, and first responders. As such, BusinessCom is now providing COTM (Communications on the Move) services specifically designed to support Flat Panel Antennas (FPAs) such as Kymeta™. FPAs provide low-profile solutions for land transport, government and defense, maritime and energy markets.

BusinessCom is pleased to announce that it is now a Kymeta™ Partner and will be working together on programs featuring their advanced FPAs and developing a new service specifically designed to support this type of platform.

For further information on BusinessCom services and solutions please CLICK HERE

April 2020

While ambitious plans for off-world settlements remain in the eyes of many as science fiction, space sector professionals the world over are exploring ways to make it reality. In our overview of recent developments on page 16, we consider the sustainability factor and the importance of microorganisms, as well as ecohabitats such as the Seed of Life project.

February 2020

I read an interesting fact recently: No human has yet been killed by space junk. Five Japanese sailors were reportedly injured in 1969, and one woman in the USA was grazed by a rocket fragment in 1997, but not one human has died. How can that be possible?

January 2020

… and we’re back! It’s a brand-new year and a brand-new decade, and for the first time in 20 years, that decade is less of a mouthful – the noughties and the twenty-tens didn’t exactly roll off the tongue – the twenties, on the other hand, is pleasingly easy to say and already has a delightfully nostalgic feel to it. Or perhaps I’ve simply watched ‘The Great Gatsby’ too many times over Christmas…

September 2019

It’s nearer the end of 2019 than the start (where did the time go?), and it’s been a major year for connectivity and automation. This year, we’ve seen the first 5G networks launched in the UK – this is big news, especially for the machine-to-machine (M2M), Internet of Things (IoT) and autonomous transport sectors. The new high-speed connectivity is set to open up a whole host of new applications, and consumers and businesses are alike are getting very excited.

August 2019

Over the top (OTT) streaming services have experienced unprecedented popularity; the market is expected to grow from US$97.43 billion to a whopping US$332.52 billion in 2025, a CAGR of 16.7 percent. As more and more big names enter the fray, with Disney, Apple and WarnerMedia coming soon, the market is becoming extremely competitive. In an interesting new take on OTT services, it was announced that Steven Spielberg is preparing a horror series to be viewed on mobile phones, which can only be watched when it’s dark outside. ‘Spielberg’s After Dark’ will span 10-12 episodes and be available exclusively on Quibi, a new OTT platform in the making dedicated to short-form video, created by former Disney and HP executives.

July 2019

It was recently brought to my attention that new doors are opening for the drone industry. As satellite sector participants, we’re well-versed with drones being utilised for a number of applications; beyond-line-of-sight communications (in the battlefield, for example), intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR), commercial deliveries, aerial photography, racing, as satellite simulators (for fine-tuning the installation of a shipboard antenna), off-world prospecting, etc. This is by no means an exhaustive list.

June 2019

In Britain, summer has officially arrived. Early sunrises lead into long hazy days, and seemingly never-ending evenings. The streets are bustling with tourists, BBQ smoke is everywhere, and the clink of ice never far away. While we bask in the heat, it’s important not to forget about weather going on across the rest of the world. Here in the UK, we tend to complain whatever the weather; it’s too cold, it’s too windy, it’s too wet, and then, as soon as summer hits, it’s too hot! Perhaps it’s because of the national obsession of discussing the weather at every possible moment, however, recent years have given us some unseasonably scorching temperatures. In the summer of 2018, UK temperatures peaked at 35.3 degrees Celsius in August, and the heat wave brought with it drought, hosepipe bans, crop failures and wildfires. This extreme weather is just one example of climate change, a global and persistent problem which, despite what naysayers’ spout, is already affecting us all.

May 2019

Since humankind first walked the Earth, we have been modifying our bodies. Contrary to the argument parents might face with their children about why a nose ring might be desired, tattoos, piercings, scarification and surgery have been used for millennia to differentiate ourselves from others or identify with a particular group.

April 2019

Accessing space is expensive, so much so that when the first satellites launched into orbit around our world, they were the preserve of government organisations alone. The world’s first satellite, Sputnik 1, was placed into orbit by the Soviet Union in 1957 and marked a major step in the exploration of space. Later in 1960, the world’s first satellite designed for communications applications, Echo 1, was launched into orbit by NASA. While the commercial segment started to edge into the space arena with the 1962 launch of Telstar 1, it
wasn’t until much later that commercial entities gained a real foothold in the newly-opened space sector.

January 2019

One of the wonders of the modern world is our freedom of choice. Back in the 1900s, options were very much limited; strawberry jam was strawberry jam, and you’d be lucky in some regions if there was even another flavour available. Likewise, TV was TV; and everyone in the country had access to the same four channels (and gradually five, and six, and so on).

December 2018

I can’t believe it’s this time of year again – Thanksgiving and Christmas are upon us, and we’ve successfully navigated our way through
another twelve months.


It’s been a pretty big year for the space sector. SpaceX has launched a Tesla Roadster with the ‘Starman’ mannequin into space during
a Falcon Heavy test flight; the company faced some pretty big stock dives in the second half of the year, although successfully launched its Falcon 9 from the West Coast of the USA for the first time in October.

August 2018

The long-standing spectrum battle between satellite and terrestrial operators took a new turn recently with the July announcement that Intelsat, Eutelsat and SES have aligned on a market-based proposal for the future use of the lower C-band spectrum in the USA.

June 2018

For space industry observers, it’s easy to believe that anything is possible, that there are no limits to what we can do. All this talk of self-driving cars, hotels on Mars, and super-fast global Internet for everyone makes people think we’re so much further along than we actually are. While all these ideas are under research and development, we’re still some way off seeing them actualised just yet.

January 2018

We’re here at the start of a whole new year! I hope everyone had a refreshing break and is as ready to dive back into it all as we are at Satellite Evolution Group. 2018 brings with it endless possibilities if you’re inclined to optimism, or potentially the most turbulent year yet if you’re not; there are a lot of dangerous people out there with questionable ideas that could come into play this year.

December 2017

For many of us, it’s been a busy year. The biggest shows, CABSAT, Satellite 2017, CommunicAsia, IBC and AfricaCom, have been interspersed with smaller but still critical events like the IRG’s Annual Workshop and Global MilSatCom, as well as invaluable visits to key clients.

October 2017

It’s that time of year again when we need to start gearing up for the social season – we’ve got three months of social events geared around Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, and everything in between. Children are returning to school, students are on their way back to university, and those of us in the satellite industry have recently returned from IBC 2017. 

October 2017

At the time of writing, I’m looking ahead to celebrating a milestone birthday at the weekend. Birthdays have never really concerned me – Christmas has always been a far more important event, with the magic that surrounds it, the good food, and the time spent with family – but for the last few weeks, I’ve found myself reflecting on how things have changed over the years.


Consumerism has long been a major national pastime in the UK, especially for women. We buy things to make ourselves feel good, to keep up with societal norms, or perhaps just the neighbours, and to mark our place in our social circles. As teenagers, we spent our allowances or income earned from Saturday jobs on the latest fashion and technology. Of course, what we spent our money on changes with each generation, but in general, we had to have the latest clothes, video games and gadgets to fit in with our peers, and this notion followed us in one way or another throughout our lives. Education, mortgages, kids, pensions; nothing stopped us splashing the cash.

August 2017

We’ve come so far in terms of computing technology that the world today is unrecognisable from that of 50 years ago. The technological revolution has changed millions of lives for the better with tools like Smart phones, tablets and laptops, each enabling so many new opportunities. With these tools, we can run online businesses, shop for groceries from the comfort of our own home, complete further education from remote locations, and stay in touch with loved ones, in real-time, from anywhere on the planet.

July 2017

Attending conferences and forums is one of the best ways to get a real indication of how people in the industry are really feeling on certain topics. As such, the CASBAA Satellite Industry Forum (SIF) 2017, which took place on 22nd May, was an excellent opportunity for those seeking to learn more about the Asian market.

June 2017

In April, much of the UK reacted with shock when Prime Minister Theresa May called a snap General Election, to be held on 8 June 2017, so soon after the triggering of Article 50 to leave the European Union (EU) at the end of March. Many questions have been asked in the wake of the announcement, and we still don’t really have any idea what will happen to the UK’s space sector following Brexit.

May 2017

We’re at that time of year again - conference season, as I like to call it, is in full swing. Satellite 2017, CABSAT 2017 and NAB Show are behind us, while CommunicAsia and IBC are looming. Events like these provide a massive stream of value. Hearing about the leading trends in conference sessions and learning about the latest technology at the exhibition are the two most overt aspects of an event for many of us, but in truth, the value goes far beyond that. For my part, I find that the one-on-one interviews and spontaneous conversations provide the most insight into what’s really going on, and how people truly feel about the latest developments. 

April 2017

In the past, we had specific devices for specific roles. Phones were for making phone calls, cameras were for taking photos, TVs were for watching TV, and games consoles were for playing games. All that has changed today, marking a new era in technology. Phones are rarely used to make phone calls, but now enable us to browse the Internet, take photos, watch TVs, and play games. Today’s TVs have many of the same capabilities. Our devices have become largely interchangeable, all capable of a wide variety of functions that we could not have foreseen even 15 years ago.

March 2017

Customer service plays a key role in so many industries today that it’s vital to get it just right. A wrong word here or there, a phone call or email not responded to, and the complaints can be multiplied over social media or within close-contact industry circles extremely quickly, causing a great deal of bad publicity and ultimately, potential job loss.

February 2017

Space is an expensive business, but it’s inarguably a necessary cost that provides us with immeasurable gains from communications and broadcast satellites, interplanetary exploration, and a deeper understanding of our world and the universe we live in. We take for granted many modern technologies such as broadcast TV and GPS, which provide so many benefits, and which would not be here today if not for early space-based experiments.


I was recently sent a link by a friend outlining the cost of space projects compared with space-based movies. It was amusing to see that, when India became the first country to deliver a spacecraft into the orbit of Mars in September 2014 on its first attempt, the US$74 million mission cost less than the US$100 million production budget of the 2013 Hollywood blockbuster “Gravity,” where astronauts played by Sandra Bullock and George Clooney are stranded in space following the destruction of their space shuttle. 

January 2017

It’s the start of a brand-new year, a new 12 months to move forwards and improve upon 2016. Here in the UK, the mornings are darker than ever, but each day is lighter with the promise of future possibilities. Of course, with each new year comes a whole host of events to look forward to. In the next three months alone we’ve got PTC’17, the SmallSat Symposium, Satellite 2017 and CABSAT 2017. It’s going to be a busy time for anyone in the communications sector, but it’s also going to be a time of fantastic opportunities, for making new contacts, discovering new technologies, and widening horizons. 

December 2016

It’s certainly been a busy year in 2016. We’re at that point again where we can look back on the last 12 months and say: A lot has happened. This has been my first year in the satellite industry, and it’s been a real eye opener. Coming from a scientific background, it’s been amazing to explore all the avenues of space exploration and satellite communications from a technology perspective rather than as a casual observer. I’ve attended Satellite 2016, CommunicAsia, IBC 2016 and Global MilSatCom, where I’ve met the industry’s best and brightest, and experienced first-hand the next generation of communications capabilities. I’ve visited market-leading companies Telenor, STN, SIS LIVE and CGC Space, and interviewed established key players as well as exciting new up-and-comers across the entire sector. These experiences have given me a much greater understanding of the industry, while several key people have gone out of their way to explain processes and applications, giving me a greater appreciation of just what can be achieved with satellites.

November 2016

Most of us are only vaguely aware of the incredible enhancements that science has brought to our everyday lives. From mundane achievements like the ability to keep our milk cold and speaking over the telephone, to popping an aspirin for a headache or having 24/7 access to electricity, these capabilities exist almost on the periphery of our awareness. In general, science has largely been overlooked by the population and considered something that concerns ‘other people’ hidden away in labs.

October 2016

When we talk about satellites with the general public, the first thing most people think of is broadcasting. However, this is far from the case for many of us active in the sector. We might talk about mobile communications, the IoT, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), remote data applications – pretty much anything but broadcast. Indeed, satellite TV has become so ubiquitous that it’s no longer impressive, or a hot topic for conversation. Today, we need new innovations in the market to make us remember what a big part broadcasting has to play in the satellite sector.

September 2016

We’re all well-versed with the standard, day-to-day applications of satellites like broadcasting, communications, and data relay, among others. These uses are all extremely well-developed and provide a massive array of capabilities that improve the lives of billions around the world. However, because these applications are so well-established, the fact that satellites are providing amazing services all the way from space is largely under the radar of the population. Put simply, satellites are no longer exciting to the general public. 

August 2016

Its certainly been an interesting time for those residing in Europe these last few months. Following long campaigns from politicians on both sides of the argument, the UK population finally had their say on whether to stay in or leave the European Union (EU) in an historic referendum held on 23rd June. Of the 72.2 percent turn-out, 51.9 percent voted for Britain to exit (Brexit), while 48.1 percent voted to remain. 

July 2016

Despite the fact that many of us have grown up or lived significant portions of our adults lives without much in the way of connectivity beyond a basic landline phone, we’ve come to take always-on connectivity as a given in today’s world. From being able to keep up with emails in-flight or at sea, to keeping up with our TV programmes or making phone calls to loved ones while we’re thousands of miles away from home, we have become addicted to connectivity. 

June 2016

It should come as no surprise to our readers that today, small satellites are big business. Along with the other key satellite trend, high throughput satellites (HTS), we are seeing some truly ground-breaking innovative new technologies being developed. It’s certainly an exciting time to be involved in the satellite industry, especially for new entrants like myself. As HTS and small satellites are worlds apart from each other, the big and the small if you will, there is little competition between them. While small satellites fulfil Earth observation, Earth and space science, and experimental needs like the development of cutting-edge laser communications, HTS will meet demand for increased data transfers, broadcast capacity and mobile communications. The lack of market crossover makes the emergence of these two technologies truly complementary.

May 2016

Communications are all around us. They run literally everything in our world, from security, education and healthcare, through to finance, transport and business. At any given moment, trillions of human-to-human and machine-to-machine (M2M) communications are taking place. Communications have taken over every aspect of our lives; from keeping loved ones in touch over long distances (or from just streets away in the case of love-sick teenagers), through to relaying vital financial or security data for governments and corporations. In the absence of good communications, relationships fall apart, the financial sector would collapse and borders would go unsecured. Without communications, life as we know it would be impossible. 

April 2016

Hybrid networks may be nothing new, but their popularity is booming right now thanks to their versatility. By utilizing a range of terrestrial and space broadcast services to achieve connectivity, hybrid networks combine the best of all available technologies to provide a more efficient, adaptable, and cost-effective service. Hybrid broadcasting is, figuratively speaking, having your cake and eating it too, a true combination of the best of both worlds.

March 2016

I am not sure that I recognise the world anymore. It is much more dangerous than the one I grew up with. A world that is beset with natural disasters, famine, a European refugee crisis and terrorism. As countries look to secure their citizens’ personal safety, more and more money is being spent on so called ‘homeland security’. But what does that actually mean? Are we talking about our private lives coming under more scrutiny from eyes in the sky or being able to go about our day-to-day business safely? 

February 2016

We tend to go through life taking things for granted. Take natural resources for example. I am sure there are plenty of people like me that drive their car, fill up with petrol and not give a seconds thought as to how that fuel got there. 


The demand on our world’s natural resources are greater than ever and they are being depleted at an incredible rate. The oil extractors, mining outfits and the exploration companies are all having to work harder and longer to find and extract sources of metals, minerals and fossil fuels. This means going further and further afield into isolated and untouched regions - regions without basic communications. But how important is communication to these remote operations?

January 2016

I find that a decent editorial is always tricky to write. It is all about finding an angle that will prove interesting to the reader. The difficulty in this issue is that there are too many angles to choose from. Do we talk about distance learning, autonomous ships, earth observation, launcher developments – or indeed the common denominator – satellite?

December 2015

It seems to me, over the last few years, there have been some recurring themes that I have found myself writing about in these Editorial columns. One has been interference and the other, the fight to save C-band from wireless terrestrial services.

 
My awareness of both of these issues was piqued when I worked at GVF, the non-profit association for the global satellite industry, over ten years ago. Since then, the industry has been working hard to raise awareness of the issues caused by both challenges. Here at Satellite Evolution, we have published article after article on the critical communications that satellite delivers in crisis situations, to enterprises, to people on the wrong side of the Digital Divide. 

November 2015

In this issue, I have been particularly struck by the good that satellite does and the fact that we really should wave the flag more for this industry and its incredible work. Just recently, I sat down for a talk with Lou Zacharilla, Director of Development for the Society of Satellite Professionals International. He was telling me more about their Better Satellite World campaign and though we all know it, the drum has not been banging loud enough in support of the importance and relevance of the work that satellite does for all of us. 

October 2015

Of all the humanitarian crises that are affecting the EMEA region at the moment, the one that is gathering most attention is that of the plight of Syrian, Iraqi and Afghan refugees sweeping across Europe. It is a human tragedy, and the footage we see on news reports and the images that are splashed across the newspapers day after day only serve to remind us of the hardship that is being endured by these men, women and children who, for the most part, are simply trying to seek a better life for their families. Life in their native countries has gradually become unsustainable. They cannot find work, cannot earn a wage, and cannot afford rent or enough food and basic needs. They are left with no choice but to leave their homeland, often war-torn, to look for something better. 

Please reload