World-Class Satellite Communication Sales and Rentals

Google Analytics Code

Check Out Our Rental Options

GIT Satellite's satellite phone weekly or monthly rentals include the new Iridium 9555 satellite phone with Iridium service. The Iridium 9555 phone is a quantum advance in the world of satellite...


Monday, August 21, 2017

This Week in Satellite News! (Aug 14 – Aug 21 2017)

Check Out The Solar Eclipse Through the Eyes of NASA

On Monday, Aug. 21, North America was treated to an eclipse of the Sun. The eclipse's path stretched from Salem, Oregon to Charleston, South Carolina. NASA covered it live from coast to coast from unique vantage points on the ground and from aircraft and spacecraft, including the International Space Station. Check out some of the amazing video and images captured during the event:

For more information click here

TDRS launch marks end of an era

The successful launch of a NASA communications satellite Aug. 18 is the final flight of the current generation of data relay spacecraft as well as for a venerable satellite bus.
A United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 401 rocket lifted off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station at 8:29 a.m. Eastern. The launch was delayed by 26 minutes because of an issue with the temperature on the Centaur upper stage detected during the standard T-4 minute hold.

Atlas 5 TDRS-M launch
Read the full story here

Google Lunar X Prize teams get extra time to win competition

After months of stating that it would offer no further extensions of the Google Lunar X Prize competition, the X Prize Foundation announced Aug. 16 it was effectively giving the five remaining teams a little extra time.
In a statement, the foundation, which administers the lunar landing competition, said that teams now had until March 31, 2018, to complete all the requirements of the prize, which include landing on the lunar surface, traveling at least 500 meters, and returning video and other data.

MX-1E Moon Express
Read the full story here

Options grow for smallsats seeking secondary payload opportunities

As the number of small satellites seeking launch continues to grow, new opportunities are emerging fly those satellites as secondary payloads on other launches as well as tools to identify those opportunities.
The latest entrant in the field is Precious Payload, a company that seeks to provide a global reservation service for smallsat secondary payloads analogous to booking airline tickets or hotel rooms.

An ISRO Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle lifts off Feb. 14 carrying 104 satellites on a single rocket. Credit: ISRO
Read the full story here

Smallsat developers propose self-regulation to address orbital debris concerns

As the number of cubesats and other small satellites grows, experts advise that some degree of industry self-regulation will be needed to avoid collisions that could lead to more restrictive government regulations.
During a panel session at the 31st Annual Conference on Small Satellites here Aug. 6, representatives from across the smallsat community said that while the odds of a collision involving a smallsat remained low, such an event could trigger an overreaction of government regulations if the community isn’t prepared.

NASA CubeSats Heading into Orbit (Artist's Concept) Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
Read the full story here

NSR Projects Satellite Ground Segment to Reach $158 Billion by 2026

Analysts at Northern Sky Research (NSR) have forecast 2016 to 2026 revenues for commercial satellite ground equipment to surpass $158 billion, according to the second edition of its Commercial Satellite Ground Segment report.
In the report, NSR states satellite TV continues to be the largest segment by shipments and revenues, with Set-Top Boxes (STBs) and antennas generating the largest shares. However, in terms of growth, Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT) platforms driven by verticals such as consumer broadband and mobility represent the highest opportunity.

L-band antenna at Redu ground station. Photo: ESA.
Read the full story here

Beyond HAL: How artificial intelligence is changing space systems

Mars 2020 is an ambitious mission. NASA plans to gather 20 rock cores and soil samples within 1.25 Mars years, or about 28 Earth months — a task that would be impossible without artificial intelligence because the rover would waste too much time waiting for instructions.
It currently takes the Mars Science Laboratory team at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory eight hours to plan daily activities for the Curiosity rover before sending instructions through NASA’s over-subscribed Deep Space Network. Program managers tell the rover when to wake up, how long to warm up its instruments and how to steer clear of rocks that damage its already beat-up wheels.

This computer-generated view depicts part of Mars at the boundary between darkness and daylight, with an area including Gale Crater beginning to catch morning light. Curiosity was delivered in 2012 to Gale crater, a 155-kilometer-wide crater that contains a record of environmental changes in its sedimentary rock. Credit: NASA JPL-CALTECH
Read the full story here

North Korea puts spotlight on U.S. space-based missile defense

North Korea’s threat to strike Guam with a salvo of ballistic missiles has raised the stakes for a U.S. missile shield some see as compromised by potentially exploitable seams in its all-important space layer.
Years of program changes, delays and cancellations have created gaps in parts of the space-based layer of the missile defense shield meant to protect the United States and some allies from ballistic missile attacks, say military space analysts, although U.S. missile defense officials dispute such claims.

North Korea launches the Hwasong-14 in July on a lofted trajectory that demonstrated sufficient range to hit the continental United States. Credit: Korean Central News Agency
Read the full story here

Monday, August 14, 2017

This Week in Satellite News! (Aug 07 – Aug 14 2017)

RigNet, Inmarsat disputing cancelled $65 million Global Xpress contract

RigNet, a supplier of telecommunications services to the oil and gas industry, has pulled out of a $65 million capacity lease on Inmarsat’s Global Xpress satellite constellation, triggering a legal dispute between the two companies.
In an Aug. 8 filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, RigNet said it gave Inmarsat a “notice of termination” for the contract, “pursuant to its contractual rights under the agreement.”

Inmarsat 5 F1 and F2 Global Xpress satellites at Boeing's El Segundo, California-facility. Credit: Inmarsat
Read the full story here

Falcon 9 launches Dragon with heavy science payload

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket successfully launched a Dragon cargo spacecraft Aug. 14 with a diverse payload of science experiments for the International Space Station.
The Falcon 9 lifted off from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida at 12:31 p.m. Eastern, and deployed the Dragon spacecraft into low Earth orbit 10 minutes later. Neither NASA nor SpaceX reported any issues during the countdown or liftoff. The Dragon, flying a mission designated SpX-12, will arrive at the ISS early Aug. 16.

Falcon 9 CRS-12 launch
Read the full story here

Addvalue, Inmarsat Jointly Launch Inter-satellite Data Relay Service

As a follow-through of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) announced in February, Addvalue Technologies has formalized an agreement with Inmarsat to jointly offer a commercial on-demand communications service specifically designed to address the Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite market. According to the companies, the service, termed Inter-Satellite Data Relay Service (IDRS), will enhance and improve the operational efficiency of LEO satellite operations globally and could be of particular interest to operators of scientific, weather forecasting, Earth observation and imaging missions.

Addvalue produced the terminal for Inmarsat's Inter-Satellite Data Relay System, which was tested in orbit on the Velox-11 satellite built by Nanyang Technological University's Satellite Research Center in Singapore. Credit: AVI
Read the full story here

Researchers Send Quantum “Hack-Proof” Message Via Satellite

Chinese researchers have been experimenting with laser technology in hopes of unlocking a new way to securely transmit data via satellite using quantum technology. Now, researchers have announced some progress using Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) to communicate with the Micius satellite, which beamed messages to two mountain-top receiving stations.

Rendition of satellite laser communications. Photo: NASA.
Read the full story here


U.S. Army prepares to launch Kestrel Eye satellite atop Falcon 9

The U.S. Army is set to launch its Kestrel Eye electro-optical microsatellite Aug. 14 atop a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, service officials said last week at the annual Space and Missile Defense Symposium.
The Kestrel Eye satellite, built by Adcole Maryland Aerospace, is due to launch from Cape Canaveral as part of a cargo resupply mission to the International Space Station, Lt. Gen. James Dickinson, commander of the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command, said during the symposium.

Kestrel Eye
Read the full story here

Smallsat industry seen as robust enough to survive any bubble

Is the smallsat industry in the midst of a bubble? Yes and no, according to one group of experts.
A panel discussion about smallsat business and finance issues during the 31st Annual Conference on Small Satellites here Aug. 8 argued that while the recent surge of investment in small satellite ventures will likely lead to future consolidation, the underlying industry itself is not in danger of collapse.
“I think the trend is absolutely to smallsats,” said Randy Segal, senior partner at law firm Hogan and Lovells. “I think the existence of smallsats, going from big sats to smallsats, is not a bubble. It’s going to stay.”

Tyvak cubesat
Read the full story here

Smallsat market forecast to exceed $30 billion in coming decade

French consultancy Euroconsult forecasts that significant expansion in terms of capabilities and demand is underway in the smallsat market.
More than 6,200 smallsats are to be launched in the next 10 years, with the market value expected to reach up to $30.1 billion, compared with $8.9 billion in the previous decade, according to a report Euroconsult released last month.

Walter Ballheimer, the CEO of German Orbital Systems, said the company considers Euroconsult’s estimates realistic, but space “is a risky and expensive business.”

The forecast is “based on estimations of a successful deployment of OneWeb and SpaceX megaconstellations which technically are also small satellites,” he said. Credit: German Orbital Systems
Read the full story here

Inmarsat says business largely immune to current capacity oversupply

British satellite operator Inmarsat says the mobility markets where it does the most business are largely unaffected by today’s oversupply of capacity, and in some cases might need even more.
London-based Inmarsat placed one of the only three geostationary satellite orders awarded industry-wide this year as other operators continue to hold on new investments.
Rupert Pearce, Inmarsat’s CEO, told investors Aug. 3 that it’s arguably not a surprise that operators who do worry about oversupply “are beginning to sit on their hands and let the supply play out” rather than worsen their predicament, but that burden is not Inmarsat’s.

Inmarsat EAN satellite
Read the full story here

Learn More About Iridium Certus Broadband!

A New Era of Innovation Begins

Iridium Certus℠ will...