• RHEA Group is leading a consortium of Belgian companies to run a satellite pooling and sharing system (PSS) initiative.
  • Designed for satellite communications users with specific reliability, availability and security requirements, the Secure PSS Hub digital platform, which is built on ST Engineering iDirect’s Newtec Dialog®, will include a high security and reliability version of the SatADSL C-SDP, an innovative mission configurator and ad-hoc security monitoring features.
  • The European Space Agency supports this project as part of its R&D effort to support industry to develop agnostic interfaces for pooling and sharing systems under its programme of Advanced Research in Telecommunications (ARTES).

A consortium of Belgian companies led by RHEA Group and including SatADSL and ST Engineering iDirect, has been awarded a contract by ESA to develop and run an enhanced satellite communications PSS. The dual-use digital platform, called Secure PSS Hub, will have an innovative mission configurator and ‘built-in’ security and reliability feature to provide secure and guaranteed access to satellite communications for a wide range of users. The pooling and sharing services will be built on ST Engineering iDirect’s Newtec Dialog® platform which will provide strengthened security features. Once operational, RHEA’s security team based in Diegem and Redu in Belgium together with its partner SatADSL, based in Brussels, who will commercially operate the resulting PSS Platform, will be able to offer secure PSS services to users anywhere in the world and serve Institutional and Governmental customers worldwide, integrating offers from different commercial satcom resource providers.

Pooling and sharing satellite communication capacity from multiple satcom satellite operators in a secure manner provides an innovative alternative, cost-effective way for users to gain access to secure communications services and can be particularly beneficial if they are required at short notice or if they are used for communications between governmental agencies or between governments.

The global satcom market is predicted to generate a cumulative revenue of over $119 billion from 2018 to 2025, growing at an annual rate of 2.4% (Frost & Sullivan 2018). This market sector increase is a result of the existing satellite operators investing in diversified solutions, including small satellite constellations, high throughput satellites and downstream infrastructure.

Arne Matthyssen, Chief Solutions and Innovation Officer, RHEA Group, said, “This contract fully leverages the expertise and competencies of RHEA and its Belgian partner’s security solutions. Pooling and sharing systems are the new disruptive digital platforms. They represent new solutions for more reliable, available and secure satcom services for institutional, governmental and commercial users. Working with our partners, we will define detailed user requirements, develop the systems architecture, evaluate performances of early prototypes and identify the technological challenges over the long-term evolution of the system.”

”The new secure Pooling and Sharing system will nicely enhance SatADSL current operator agnostic, technology agnostic, Cloud-based service Delivery Platform, neXat. SatADSL is already offering its bandwidth aggregation services to satellite teleports and enterprise markets around the world for several years now. Working with RHEA will enhance the security of the platform and hence open the door to demanding governmental markets worldwide,” said Thierry Eltges, Chief Executive Officer at SatADSL.

Koen Willems, Head of International Government Strategy, ST Engineering iDirect added, “Besides its unsurpassed return rates in shared bandwidth networks, the Dialog platform is a versatile communications system that supports functionality upgrades to maximise capital investment. Building the Pooling and Sharing system on the Dialog platform will enable efficient, reliable, scalable and secure communications as well as multi-service capabilities that allow government and emergency response users to access a range of mission-critical applications.”

This contract is part of ESA’s overall R&D effort to support industry to develop agnostic interfaces for pooling and sharing systems, targeting close-to-market implementations that will be accepted by commercial operators, service providers and commercial PSS providers.

Press contact RHEA Group: Isabelle Roels

Press contact SatADSL: caroline.devos@satadsl.net

Press contact iDirect: jbettinger@idirect.net