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SATCON looks at the industry’s present priorities and future promise

As part of this year’s Content and Communications World (CCW) Showon November 13-14 in New York, the SATCON conference will kick off its 12 annual gathering with a special keynote panel discussion entitled “Leadership Dialogue: Present Priorities, Future Visions” on Thursday, November 14, from 9:00 - 10:00 AM.

Susan Irwin, president of the U.S. arm of global consulting firm Euroconsult, will moderate a dialogue between leaders of today’s satellite business and the winners of SSPI’s 2013 Promise Awards, that is, satellite executives under 35 who have been identified by their employers and an independent jury as future leaders. Irwin is also SATCON Chair and has been since its inception in 2002.

“I’m especially enthusiastic about our Keynote Panel, which will provide an opportunity for conference attendees to ‘listen in’ to a conversation between the key satellite executives and the future industry leaders,” said Irwin.

The panel will include featured speakers Steve Collar, CEO, 03b Networks Limited; Pradman P. Kaul, CEO Hughes Communications, Inc.; and Mark Dankberg, Chairman and CEO of ViaSat.

The panel will discuss trends shaping technology, markets and business models both today and in the coming decades. This includes such issues as HTS, launch vehicles, ubiquitous communications and in-orbit industries. Irwin said she’ll encourage the panel to challenge the assumptions underlying today’s business models, which she said are dominated by complex, purpose-built satellites requiring long lifetimes to achieve profit goals.

“What we really want to focus on is what a drastically different industry might look like,” Irwin said. “One goal is to try to define what the world’s first and most successful space industry will look like when today’s young executives are in the C-suites of tomorrow’s companies.”

Richard Roithner, Director of Satcom at Euroconsult and a colleague of Irwin’s, will moderate a separate panel a day earlier at SATCON (Wednesday, November 13, from 4:00 - 5:00 PM) that will look at the impact that high throughput satellites (HTS) systems have had on the satellite industry and government. HTS is a classification for communications satellites that provide at least twice—although usually a lot more—the data throughput of a classic FSS satellitefor the same amount of allocated orbital spectrum; thus significantly reducing the operational cost-per-bit.

This panel, entitled “Will High Throughput Satellites Re-invent Satellite Communications?,” will feature speakers Michael Cook, Senior Vice President, North America Division, Hughes Network Systems, LLC; and Mark Rasmussen, Regional Vice President, North America Sales, Intelsat; who will also discuss the challenges and future opportunities of this burgeoning area.

“As we prepare for the 12th annual SATCON Conference and Exhibition, I am looking forward to a dynamic program, focusing on the innovations and applications that promise to keep this industry vibrant and healthy for years to come,” Irwin said.