SATCOMRUS 2020 Conference: New Satellite Technologies, Orbits, and Frequencies

SАTCOMRUS 2020, the XXV anniversary international conference of operators and users of Russia’s satellite communication networks, took place online on October 8, 2020. The event was held with the support of the Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media of the Russian Federation, the Federal Communications Agency and the Roscosmos State Corporation. Over 400 specialists from Russia, Great Britain, USA, Canada, Israel, Italy, France, Indonesia, Nigeria, India, Azerbaijan took part in the digital conference.

Welcoming the participants of SАTCOMRUS 2020, Deputy-Minister of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media of the Russian Federation Oleg Ivanov stressed the need to develop satellite technologies and telecommunication services to eliminate the digital divide in the Russian Federation. In his report entitled the “Role and Place of Satellite Communications in the Digital Economy of the Russian Federation”, Oleg Dukhovnitsky, Head of the Federal Communications Agency, indicated that the Express-RV project involving a multi-satellite communication system in highly elliptical orbits, which is included in the Sfera subprogram of the national program “Digital Economy of the Russian Federation”, will provide almost ubiquitous high-speed access to digital communication services, including the Internet, throughout the country, including sparsely populated areas with less than 250 residents and remote settlements of the Far North, Siberia, and the Far East.

Yuri Prokhorov, head of the Russian Satellite Communications Company (RSCC) spoke in detail about the main focal areas of company activities, which in the mid-term will impact the advancement of Russia’s domestic satellite communications industry, including completed and planned satellite launches. Yuri Prokhorov emphasized that “RSCC closely follows global trends and duly addresses them in its portfolio of services. They include flexible payloads on geostationary satellites, projects of multi-satellite communication constellations in non-geostationary orbits, the Internet of Things, and provision of communication services on mobile objects. It is these solutions to move ahead with advancing the digital economy that are incorporated into the new RSCC satellites”. Yuri Prokhorov also reported on the results of RSCC’s development of its own value-added services in broadcasting and communications on moving objects, where, despite the pandemic and the global lockdown, the company has managed to maintain its leading position in the domestic and foreign markets.

Another central theme of the conference was 5G standardization and the role of satellite communications in the buildup of the 5G ecosystem. Key speakers from organizations developing new communication standards – Viktor Strelets (ITU), Sasha Sirotkin (3GPP) – described the current status of developing 5G communication network standards. Andrey Zheglov, Deputy Director of the Department of State Policy in the Field of Communications of the Ministry of Digital Industry of Russia, also presented his vision of the prospects for the 5G networks in Russia.

Participants of the third session of the conference, “Global Restart of the Broadcast and Media Industry”, representing media and IT companies discussed the issues of the industry and changes in the media market, including the effect of the Covid-19 pandemic. In recent years, there has been a lot of talk about changes in the television and media market. On the one hand, experts and market players have in one way or another have recognized that the existing models for promoting content and services are dying out with the advent of new technologies and a change in the consumption patterns. On the other hand, large telecom operators and media holdings are refraining from serious revision of strategies, relying on familiar business models. The panelists also discussed how the global economic crisis associated with the Covid-19 pandemic has changed the balance of power in the media content market.

As part of the SATCOMRUS 2020 fourth session, Russian and international satellite operators and manufacturers presented their plans for business development in low-orbit satellite communication systems, and also talked about ready-made solutions and technological innovations in the segment of satellite user equipment.

At the end of the conference, the SATCOMRUS AWARDS 2020 industry award ceremony and wrap-up of the marketing campaign “In the Runup to the 75th anniversary of Victory” took place. The campaign was launched by RSCC together with partners in high-speed satellite system access and Ka-band. The SATCOMRUS AWARDS 2020 statuettes were awarded to Intersputnik, JSC SATIS-TL-94, Azercosmos, State Budgetary Institution RD RGVK Dagestan named after Garuna Kurbanova, National Association of Television and Radio Broadcasters (NAT), Phoenix Engineering Bureau LLC, Republican Center of Infocommunication Technologies – a State Budgetary Institution of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia), Kabelshchik Internet periodical, as well as Ms Yulia Shakhmanova – for her personal contribution to the advancement of satellite TV and radio broadcasting in Russia. According to the results of the special campaign “In the Runup to the 75th Anniversary of Victory”, the 3rd place was taken by Raduga-Internet LLC, and the first place, with the largest number of new connections, went to operator Ka-Internet JSC.

The conference organizing committee expresses cordial appreciation to general partners of the conference Intersputnik and ISS Reshetnev Company, and strategic partners RTRS and Eutelsat, as well such companies as Isatel, Ka-Internet, Hughes, Gilat, AltegroSky, Thales Alenia Space, Morsvyazsputnik, RTCOMM, KB Iskra and TMT Conference, which have been partners of SATCOMRUS for many years.

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