SatComRus 2019 Conference: Satellite Communications for the Digital Economy

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October 3, 2019 in St. Petersburg, the Central Museum of Communications named for A.S. Popov hosted SatComRus 2019, the XXIV international conference of operators and users of Russia’s satellite communications network. The event was organized by the Russian Satellite Communications Company (RSCC) with the support of the Ministry of Digital Development, Telecommunications and Mass Media of the Russian Federation, and the Federal Communications Agency. This year, the conference was attended by more than 330 delegates from 135 organizations of Russia, France, Belarus, Italy, Great Britain, Israel, Singapore, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Japan, the USA and other countries.

Among the participants of SatComRus 2019 were heads of satellite communications operators and space industry enterprises, top officials of research institutes and telecommunication equipment manufacturers, representatives of the broadcasting industry, financial institutions, the insurance community and the media.

The major topic of the industry forum was the role of satellite communications in building a digital economy. The conference actively discussed scenarios for the development of the satellite communications industry and the prospects for its transformation in the 5G era, as well as various points of view on the implementation of space projects using geostationary and non-geostationary orbits. The forum participants were greatly interested in the issues of choosing optimal business strategies in the operator business and ways to manage emerging risks.

Yuri Urlichich, Deputy Head of Roscosmos State Corporation, sent a welcoming message to the conference participants. He emphasized that “the future development of the Russian orbiting satellite constellation for the period until 2030 is planned to be provided within the framework of the “Sphera” program. The strategic goal of this program is to build an interconnected space information infrastructure, based on the modernization of the existing and the creation of new satellite communication and broadcasting systems in the interests of all sectors of the Russian economy in the context of their digital transformation.”

The plenary session of the conference was opened by Igor Chursin, Deputy Head of the Federal Communications Agency. In his speech, he outlined the challenges facing state-owned and commercial satellite communications operators in Russia and in the world today, as well as the main trends of development on the global market for the coming years.

Yuri Prokhorov, RSCC Director General, made a report on “Satellite communications in new segments of the digital economy”. In his speech, he summarized the main results of the Company’s work over the past year, outlined the key drivers of business growth for RSCC and spoke about the prospects for the development of the satellite constellation of the Company until 2030, including the development and launch of 12 new communication and broadcasting satellites and the implementation of a project involving the multifunctional satellite communication system Express-RV in highly elliptical orbits. The report of Yuri Prokhorov also reflected the theme of the Internet of Things (IoT) and the industrial Internet for mobile objects, in which RSCC sees great potential for international cooperation. Concluding his speech, the RSCC Director General spoke about the changes that are taking place in the broadcasting market, and also touched on the future of satellite communications networks in the 5G era, inviting representatives of the industry community to a discussion.

The plenary session was also attended by Nikolai Testoedov, Director General of JSC “ISS Reshetnev Company”, Valery Butenko, Director General of NIIR, Victor Pinchuk, First Deputy Director General of RTRS, Nicolas Teno, Thales Alenia Space Sales Director for Russia and CIS, Vincent Germonpre, Director of Telecommunication Satellite Sales for Russia and CIS in Airbus Defense and Space, Alexander Shevchenko, deputy head of the space and aviation risk insurance department of Ingosstrakh, and Igor Korolev, a CNews journalist.

At the plenary session of SatComRus 2019, an official representative of Russian Export Center Marina Loseva announced the results of the Exporter of the Year 2019 All-Russia Award in the field of international cooperation and export. For successful work to expand its export potential in 2018, RSCC became a finalist and one of the winners of the competition in the nomination “Exporter of the Year in the Service Sector” in Russia’s Central Federal District.

As part of the first session “Satellite communications in the modern world. Digital Economy Development Trends: The Place of Satellite Operators in the 5G Ecosystem?” A discussion took place of the global experience in integrating 5G and satellite communications, the battle for the radio frequency spectrum between satellite network operators and the 5G community, as well as the possibilities for introducing 5G networks in Russia in the C-band and prospects development of satellite internet of things.

The participants of the conference were very interested in the round table on the subject of “Television in the era of the fourth industrial revolution. How the television industry is coping with new technological reality.” During the discussion, representatives of the leading players in the Russian television market considered the development prospects of the television industry - including linear television broadcasting, the integration of various technological solutions into a single service, new growth points for pay-TV operators, the impact of user-generated content on the appearance of the television industry, and the possibility of using blockchain technology for the development of a micropayment system.

The third largest session in terms of the number of participants was the third session of the conference “From GSO to New Orbits for Multisatellite Communication Systems” - 11 experts took part in it. They spoke out on the development of global communication systems, promising projects in medium orbits and satellite broadband systems at GSO, and on the readiness of ground equipment for new satellite communications systems.

At the end of the business program of the conference, the SatComRus Award ceremony was held. This year, the winners include: ISS Reshetnev Company, RTRS, RTKomm.RU LLC, Rays-Communication, A.S. Popov Central Museum of Communications, Technical Center for Television and Radio Broadcasting” of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia), ChronoSat GmbH, the journal Electrosvyaz (NIIR), and JSC KB Iskra.

At the end of the conference, the contemporary artist Vasya Lozhkin made a presentation of his paintings. Conference participants were the first visitors to his exhibition on the subject of telecom, high technologies and space, which opened on that day at the Museum. The exhibition will be open there until October 13, 2019.