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Connecting the world, village by village: Five reasons why satellite is the key

1.    Reaching locations that other technologies can’t reach

The very nature of satellite technology means it is often the only viable solution for areas where geography makes access most difficult. Where other methods of connectivity are either substandard, uneconomical or completely absent, only satellite communication technology can deliver affordable and reliable broadband connectivity direct-to-premises. The many thousands of isolated islands dotted across the Pacific Ocean provide a stark illustration of the limitations of traditional terrestrial approaches to connectivity.

2.    Frugal solutions

Cutting edge technologies are not suitable for many emerging countries as they require high levels of power supply and specialised education to operate. What’s more, they are often delicately constructed, unproven, and expensive.

Technologies need to be appropriate for the markets they serve and provide service at a price point that changes the overall market dynamic. The best term for describing such technologies is frugal. Frugal should not be confused with cheap or low-quality goods. Frugal means consciously adapted to meet local market conditions.

High-throughput Ka-band satellites represent a frugal technology that has particular potential in South-East Asia and the Pacific Islands in providing a universal, fast broadband service. HTS satellites have been in use since the early 2000s and are proven to provide much higher levels of throughput — up to 20 times that of the older FSS satellites. Kacific’s Ka-band satellite is a frugal technology: a scaled-down, intelligently targeted version of large HTS, co-owned with a partner in a condo arrangement.

3.    Designed for the sharing economy

The number of communications satellites is growing steadily, and operators are systematically launching payloads with excess capacity. Nimble players with key know-how can take advantage of this arbitrage opportunity. The key point is; you don’t have to build a constellation to provide a cost-effective, multi-continent service. Leasing excess capacity on existing satellites and utilising condominium satellites, where several players share the ownership of a satellite, present good opportunities to provide services to underserved regions at a game-changing price per gigabyte.

4.    Disaster recovery

Disaster recovery is a major issue for isolated regions throughout the world. Every year cyclones cause massive disruption to Pacific nations. In the aftermath of the Cyclone Winston that hit Fiji in February 2016, lack of communications significantly hampered rescue and recovery efforts. Equally powerful hurricanes lash the Caribbean, tsunamis threaten coastal villages across Asia, and earthquakes lay waste to remote and isolated regions all along the ring of fire. When these affect terrestrial communications, as they so often do, information flows are restricted, aid distribution is hampered, lives are lost and recovery is long delayed.

When the lone undersea fiber-optic cable linking the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) to the rest of the world was struck by a boulder in July of 2015, telecommunications, banking, healthcare and other services were disrupted to such an extent that the government declared a state of emergency.

Kacific has been working with several governments who are interested in providing increased resiliency and who recognise that satellites can address their requirements better than cable.

5.    Spots not constellations

Constellations provide a blanket of coverage, but in island nations and over vast terrains, widespread coverage is an ineffective use of the payload. Targeted beams can place capacity exactly where it is needed, whether it be over separate islands or rural regions. These spot beams are more concentrated in power than wide beams, meaning end users get a stronger signal and wastage is at a minimum. A smaller coverage area also reduces the risk of interference with other transmissions using the same frequencies, making the service more reliable.

Diversification in the wave of next-generation satellites

The atmosphere beyond our blue earth is a continuing source of fascination for people and businesses alike. Two articles in Svenska Yle and Via Satellite have looked at the wave of new satellite technology – highlighting Kacific as one of the agile players making a real difference to those on the ground.

Candace Johnson

There are many questions about the future which intrigue not just the space industry, but everyday folk around the world: What are the capabilities of these next-generation satellites? Who are they reaching? How will we deal with space debris? What does the future hold?

Finnish broadcaster Svenska Yle spoke with satellite entrepreneur Candace Johnson, who was an early investor (alongside her Oceania Women’s Network Satellite (OWNSAT) group) in Kacific.

In a growing and diverse market, Johnson points out that Kacific-1 is addressing the endemic lack of broadband in Oceania – something to be proud of. She adds that space gives women and men, girls and boys, an opportunity to really make changes for the better on earth.

Via Satellite also published an interesting piece by Carolyn Belle, a senior analyst with Northern Sky Research.

“There are two main paths for satcom operators as they weigh future procurements: to reduce risk and optimize CAPEX, or to boost capabilities and competitiveness. The holy grail, of course, is to accomplish both.” – Carolyn Belle, Via Satellite.

She poses the question:

In tomorrow’s increasingly complex market, which strategies will prevail?

The answer: It will undoubtedly be a blend.

The increasing applications for satellite technology is a positive challenge for operators to navigate. It leads to more innovation. To be in the satellite market today, is to be constantly developing leaner business models, harnessing smarter ground technologies and refining satellite technology to meet the many demands of this technology.

 

Kacific selects Kratos to build state-of-the-art multi-site gateways for Kacific-1

 

 

 

SAN DIEGO, CA, September 6, 2018 – Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc. (Nasdaq: KTOS), a leading National Security Solutions provider, announced today that it has been awarded an $11 million contract by Kacific Broadband Satellites, to design and build ground stations for Kacific’s new Ka-band High Throughput Satellite (HTS) network. The Kacific-1 HTS satellite, launching in 2019, will deliver broadband services to Pacific rim and South East Asia.

Kratos will help address Kacific’s HTS gateway infrastructure needs by designing and building a state-of-art Ka-band multi-site gateway solution for Kacific-1. Kratos’ gateway solutions are pre-configured in a secure and controlled off-site environment resulting in higher quality and faster time-to-market. The company’s industry-leading designs will optimize and protect Kacific’s investment by reducing complexity and risk, and accelerating market entry.

“Kacific sought a partner who could build a high-performance ground segment to enable us to deliver Ka-band HTS services across widely dispersed regions of the Pacific,” said Kacific CEO, Christian Patouraux. “We wanted an innovative solution which combined market leading products and best-of-breed industry tools and software with quality engineering services. The Kratos team were uniquely responsive to our design needs and our partnership marks another big milestone in our preparations to launch the Kacific-1 satellite.”

The next generation of HTS satellites promises new revenue and service opportunities for satellite operators, but are also driving important changes on the ground since current ground infrastructure is designed and optimized for traditional satellite operations. HTS satellite spot beams deliver high-bandwidth services to particular locations, causing many operators to re-think established ground station needs and designs. Kratos is leading this evolution by offering pre-configured and integrated HTS gateway solutions that enable satellite operators to maximize their HTS business model investment by reducing costs and improving time-to-market.

The Kacific contract award is for a multi-site gateway solution that will additionally include Kratos’ high-performance antennas and RF equipment, as well as several Kratos complementary ground system products, including the Compass® monitoring and control system; Monics® for carrier and spectrum monitoring; and SpectralNet™ RF-over-IP inter-facility links. The solution will be integrated at Kratos’ facility, and installed at various locations in the Pacific rim, with control equipment centralized in Kacific’s Network Operations Centre

“Satellite operators face a number of challenges when deploying HTS networks including the unique demands of implementing an HTS ground infrastructure suitable for initial operations, but designed for scalability as business requirements evolve,” said James Kramer, Kratos Senior Vice President. “We appreciate the confidence that Kacific has shown in Kratos to capitalize on their investment with a flexible, high quality multi-site solution that will support their business model now and in the years to come.”

NewSpace People: “No company has ever targeted this segment of the market with a realistic value proposition.”

Christian Patouraux talks with NewSpace People about why he founded Kacific, what makes the company different and why it is succeeding in emerging markets.

“I didn’t start Kacific to generate cash or for the excitement of launching a satellite, I started it because I had a business plan that made sense.”

Read the full interview on NewSpace People

 

Kacific satellite to provide faster, more affordable broadband to Pacific nations

Singapore – 9 December 2013 – Kacific Broadband Satellites today announced plans to launch a Ka Band High Throughput Satellite (HTS) to provide enhanced broadband to 40 million people in the Pacific including the Pacific islands, New Zealand, eastern Indonesia and Papua New Guinea.

The Pacific has the highest internet pricing and the highest Skype call prices on earth. Substandard, over-contended, 1 Mbps broadband services can cost more than US$700 per month in some territories. Estimated total potential demand for bandwidth by Pacific island states is 44 Gbps. Today just 20 percent, or less than 10 Gbps, is supplied. Kacific will sell wholesale bandwidth and anticipates that telcos and ISPs will offer it to end users at speeds of up to 10 Mbps and at price points as low as 5 percent of current costs. The service will be provided through small terminals costing just a few hundred dollars.

Kacific expects to commission its launch vehicle and payload in 2014 and to provide broadband services to the region by late 2016.

““By providing high quality broadband at a fraction of the current cost, we will allow a much larger part of the Pacific’s population to participate in the digital age,” says Kacific CEO Christian Patouraux. “With support from local governments and global institutions, that will foster greater internet usage on the island, fuelling economic growth.”

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