On February 3, 2016, in Moscow, the national satellite communications operator, Russian Satellite Communications Company (RSCC), held an extended press conference to summarize preliminary financial results for 2015. RSCC revenues for 2015 are expected to equal 9.2 billion rubles, which is 21% up on 2014. The growth is driven by the services of the new RSCC satellites commissioned in 2014-2015 and by vigorous promotion of advanced satellite communications services and digital television in Russia and in international markets.
The event was held at the Moscow Planetarium and attended by representatives of Vnesheconombank and the Russian Cosmonautics Federation (RCF). By decision of the FCR, Director General of RSCC Yuri Prokhorov was awarded the S.P.Korolev Order for active participation in the implementation of applied research in space activities. The award was presented by the honorary guests attending the press conference, Cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov, a Hero of Russia, and Vassily Kuznetsov, First Vice-President, RCF.
The Satellite Constellation
In 2015, RSCC started the operation of its three brand-new communications and broadcasting satellites, Express-AM6 (53E), Express AM7 (40E) and Express AM8 (14W). Also successfully orbited was the Express-AMU1 spacecraft (36E), scheduled to be commissioning in the first third of February 2016.
Thus, a total of seven new spacecraft have been added to the RSCC satellite orbital constellation in the 2014-2015 period, including Express-AM5, -AM6, -AM7, - AM8, -AT1, -AT2, and -AMU1. RSCC has almost completely replaced its space fleet, giving a 2.5-fold boost to the capacity of the Russian state-owned satellite assets.
As of February 1, 2016 RSCC satellite constellation comprises 13 communications and broadcasting satellites, positioned along the geostationary orbital arc from 14W to 145East.
TV and Radio Broadcasting
In 2015, under the guidance of the Federal Communications Agency, RSCC completed the build-up of the satellite segment and ground-based infrastructure to meet the requirements of the Federal Program "Development of TV and Radio Broadcasting in Russia in 2009-2018."
In addition to transmitting the federal multiplexes across all broadcasting zones of the Russian Federation, the newly-developed infrastructure goes a long way towards addressing a wide range of tasks in the field of satellite communications and digital TV.
2015 saw the doubling of TV channels (currently numbering 100) being delivered via the RSCC technological platform for broadcasters. The company provides communications services to TV companies by delivering their content via cable operators to the population throughout the territory of Russia. The platform is used to ensure compression, multiplexing, and conditional access of the TV programming package, as well as delivering traffic to the RSCC space communications centers to be subsequently uploaded to any satellite.
In the spring of 2015, the Russian satellite operators for the first time started satellite broadband services in the Ka-band via the Russian satellites operated over the Far East and Siberia. By April 2016, the plan is to expand the service area of high-speed satellite access network by adding the Central and South-Ural region of our country. The overall Ka-band coverage area will total 7 thousand kilometers.
In addition, RSCC continues to provide broadband services in the European part of Russia using the KA-SAT satellite of the European (9E).
As of the end of 2015, RSCC and its partners were providing communication services based on Ka-band satellite broadband access to approximately six thousand subscribers (including 5.4 thousand via the KA-SAT satellite).
Communication on maritime mobile objects
RSCC continues to implement the maritime VSAT project. RSCC’s experience of operations in high-latitude Arctic areas supports the technical feasibility of providing broadband services for fixed and mobile satellite communication stations up to 80 degrees North. Currently, RSCC is providing services across the territory of Eurasia, as well as over the adjacent areas of the Atlantic, Arctic, and Pacific oceans for more than 50 vessels, including expedition, research, and nuclear-powered vessels using the Northern Sea Route.
RSCC, the best regional operator
In September 2015, at the International Summit for Satellite Financing in Paris, RSCC was recognized as the world’s best regional operator. According to the prestigious jury comprising experts of the UK Satellite Finance business magazine, the US Space News newspaper, and Euroconsult analysts (France), over the past year RSCC has demonstrated the most outstanding development results. Company assessment was based on key performance indicators, including key strategic initiatives, revenue growth, and profitability of operators.