Press Release

November 23, 2015

The Society of Satellite Professionals International (SSPI) announced today the four recipients of the first annual Better Satellite World Awards, which honor established companies and disruptive innovators for making our world a more prosperous, healthier, better-educated, more sustainable and inclusive home for all humankind. Selected by an international jury for their achievements were: the Afghan Villages Networks project of Globecomm (USA), the service from SES (Luxembourg), the mobile satellite operator Inmarsat (UK) and legendary SpaceNews journalist Peter B. de Selding.  The recipients will be honored at the first Better Satellite World Awards Dinner on 4 December at London’s prestigious Reform Club.

”While the world does not need another awards program, it does need to be aware of the satellite industry and the amazing story it has to tell,” said SSPI’s director of development Louis Zacharilla.  “We hope these awards, in conjunction with our ongoing public and social media campaign, alter the narrative regarding the way satellites positively influence every aspect of human endeavor and, as an industry that impacts many industries, is a great one in which to start and build a career.”

According to SSPI, recipients for the Better Satellite World Awards were evaluated in four categories of impact.  These were global or regional impact; distribution of knowledge for the improvement of living standards; governance and commerce; and communication and humanity.

The selection of the recipients for the Better Satellite World Awards was made by an international jury consisting of members of the SSPI Satellite Hall of Fame and distinguished industry professionals. The Better Satellite World Awards Dinner in London is produced by SSPI and its UK and Isle of Man Chapters, along with international law firm Milbank, the host sponsor, as well as Arianespace, Intelsat and ManSat.

The Better Satellite World Award Recipients:

Afghanistan Village Networks
Since 2004, companies such as Globecomm have been providing satellite and terrestrial services to build the much-needed communications infrastructure of Afghanistan.  It is a quiet success in what is one of the most challenging environments in the world.

Afghan Telecom and Globecomm developed the Village Communication Network (VCN) to provide communication access for the Afghani people in the isolated regions where the communication reach is either unstable or non-existent. In seven years, the network has grown from barely 200 sites to well over 1,000. Before the existence of the VCN Network, most villagers living in the nation’s remote locations had to travel up to 3 days to get to the nearest telephone. Now with the existence of (in many cases) solar powered VCN remote terminals, they have connectivity right in their own village.

This network at the local level followed the successful implementation of a government communications network and a district communications network which pushed services into rural areas. These networks led to support for the nation’s first national democratic vote, new Internet cafes, lower mobile carrier costs and the connection of 42 government ministries.  This has led to a more effectively managed communication with citizens.  Globecomm constructed a hybrid satellite-fiber network using whose international gateway, which relied on Thuraya 1.8M terminals and Intelsat “B” earth stations. These have helped the nation to position itself for the day when it can fully participate in the global economy. by SES
The system is a global VSAT-based, multi-layer communications platform that immediately fills the gap at the onset of large-scale disasters. In addition to a global VSAT network, it provides the prepositioned equipment, always-available satellite capacity, rapid deployment from air rescue jets and a suite of applications.


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Article courtesy of SatNews

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