Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd (SSTL) and Viasat (NASDAQ: VSAT), a global communications company, today marked the start of operations of the new Viasat antenna system installed at SSTL’s Guildford headquarters with a ribbon cutting ceremony. The new antenna system forms part of the Viasat Real-Time Earth (RTE) network, a hybrid ground and space network, which has been designed to provide low-latency satellite data to users on-demand without the need to invest in a dedicated antenna system. Through this relationship, SSTL can now offer satellites with a full range of ground services to their customers, enabling quick delivery of data to customers’ processing centres on a subscription basis.
The antenna system installed at SSTL is a full-motion, 5.4m system that can operate in both S and X bands and is fully controlled from the Viasat Network Operation Centre in Colorado. The Guildford site joins other sites in the United States, Argentina, Australia and Sweden as part of Viasat’s roll out of the RTE network.
The new antenna system was installed in November 2017 and it has been successfully used to command and control SSTL satellites, thus fully testing out the network architecture. Seamless routing from the SSTL Satellite Operations Centre in Guildford through the RTE network to the satellites has been achieved and final testing is now underway with expected completion by the end of January 2018.
Kent Leka, General Manager, Antenna Systems, Viasat, said, “Viasat and SSTL have worked closely together on the integration of SSTL specific uplink and downlink protocols into the RTE ground station equipment to achieve “plug-n-play” compatibility between the satellites and SSTL’s Satellite Operations Centre (SOC). SSTL’s satellites will now be able to utilise any of the ground stations within Viasat’s RTE network seamlessly with no hardware changes needed.”
SSTL’s payload data share customers, such as those signed up for the NovaSAR mission, will benefit from easy access to payload data via the option of a bundled payload and network access contract.
James Northam, Head of Satellite Operations, Ground Segments and Mission Services at SSTL, commented “The ability to use the Viasat RTE network with plug-n-play compatibility to SSTL’s protocols opens a new range of options for our customers who now have the option to use the RTE network to download data from their satellites without the need to invest in a ground station infrastructure of their own. Customers have the choice to invest in their own ground segment infrastructure, use the RTE network, or even a combination of the two. The addition of RTE will bring a substantial flexibility to our Mission offerings and we look forward to introducing these new concepts into our Mission portfolio over the coming months.”
In addition to the RTE network, SSTL’s ground infrastructure includes two ground stations in the UK and a ground station mini rack at Kongsberg Satellite Services facilities in Svalbard.
Viasat, Inc. contacts
Chris Phillips, Public Relations, 760-476-2322, firstname.lastname@example.org
June Harrison, Investor Relations, 760-476-2633, IR@viasat.com
Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL) is the world's leading small satellite company, delivering operational space missions for a range of applications including Earth observation, science, communications, navigation, in-orbit servicing and beyond Earth infrastructure. The Company designs, manufactures and operates high performance satellites and ground systems for a fraction of the price normally associated with space missions, with 500 staff working on turnkey satellite platforms, space-proven satellite subsystems and optical instruments.
Since 1981, SSTL has built and launched more than 50 satellites for 20 international customers – as well as providing training and development programmes, consultancy services, and mission studies for ESA, NASA, international governments and commercial customers, with an innovative approach that is changing the economics of space.
Headquartered in Guildford, UK, SSTL is part of Airbus.
Viasat is a global communications company that believes everyone and everything in the world can be connected. For more than 30 years, Viasat has helped shape how consumers, businesses, governments and militaries around the world communicate. Today, the Company is developing the ultimate global communications network to power high-quality, secure, affordable, fast connections to impact people’s lives anywhere they are—on the ground, in the air or at sea. To learn more about Viasat, visit: www.viasat.com, go to Viasat’s Corporate Blog, or follow the Company on social media at: Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter or YouTube.
Forward Looking Statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements that are subject to the safe harbors created under the Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Forward looking statements include statements about the expected completion date of the RTE network, its delivery speed, compatibility and other benefits. Readers are cautioned that actual results could differ materially from those expressed in any forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ include: contractual problems, product defects, manufacturing issues or delays, regulatory issues, technologies not being developed according to anticipated schedules, or that do not perform according to expectations; Viasat's ability to realize the anticipated benefits of the RTE platforms, unexpected expenses or delays related to the satellite systems, the ability to successfully implement Viasat's business plan for Viasat's anticipated timeline or at all, including with respect to the satellite platforms; and risks associated with the construction, launch and operation of Viasat's antenna; and increased competition and other factors affecting the communications market generally. In addition, please refer to the risk factors contained in Viasat's SEC filings available at www.sec.gov, including Viasat's most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date on which they are made. Viasat undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements for any reason.