Tuesday, October 7, 2014

India Seeking Outside Collaboration on High-throughput Satellite

“We are looking for international cooperation in this area,” ISRO Chairman K. Radhakrishnan said. 

Credit: Photo courtesy of Indian government

The Indian government wants a high-throughput satellite generating at least 100 gigabits-per-second in orbit within five years and is seeking international partners in its development, ISRO Chairman K. Radhakrishnan said.

If pursued, the project would mark a rare opportunity for foreign suppliers to crack India’s mainly closed satellite telecommunications market, which in any case has shown signs of opening in the past year.

“We are looking for international cooperation in this area,” ISRO Chairman K. Radhakrishnan said in an address to the 65th International Astronautical Congress in Toronto (IAC 2014).

ISRO, with collaboration from domestic companies, builds its own satellites and operates them for its own account, and then acts as India’s telecommunications regulator with respect to pricing and market access by non-Indian satellite fleet operators.

International collaboration on Satellite Communications Systems is a normal part of the Space Industry and provides the most cost effective solution for countries.

Rapid technological advancements and the provision of advanced communications would be readily supported and used to great advantage by India's technologically astute corporations.

For India, the question will be whether to adopt a satellite broadband model such as in the United States, where Hughes Network Systems and ViaSat Inc. own their own satellites, build consumer broadband terminals and sell the service; or to purchase competing technologies.

Maryland-based Hughes Communications, owned by EchoStar Corp., Colorado, has long targeted India as a market ripe for consumer broadband.

The Hughes Comms' SPACEWAY 3 satellite, built by Boeing Satellite Systems International, Inc., was successfully launched on August 14, 2007 by Arianespace and is in its permanent geosynchronous orbital slot of 95° West longitude. 

Credit: Hughes Comms

Hughes has recently purchased Ka-band capacity on a satellite being built for fleet operator Eutelsat of Paris for a consumer broadband project in Brazil.

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