A path forward to unified SATCOM

19 December 2017. A unified SATCOM approach in establishing and investing in a future satellite communications architecture will yield optimal results for missions, Senior Vice President of Government Strategy and Policy for Inmarsat’s U.S. Government Business Unit, Rebecca Cowen-Hirsch, explains in her first article as Senior Contributor for MilSatMagazine.

It is imperative for military personnel around the world to have an immediate and assured access to resilient, robust and secure SATCOM around the world, across the full spectrum of engagement. This begins with an integrated SATCOM architecture, leveraging SATCOM as a Service, and requires engagement from both government agencies and commercial satellite companies to work together in creating a more protected and resilient space environment that will improve the space capabilities for our servicemen and women.

Though even with the advanced maturity and ubiquity of telecommunications provided via SATCOM, there still remains a divide between historical military acquisition and use of SATCOM through leasing of spectrum (MHz) versus how the industry provides and users buy services – as a managed service capability to support the mission, whether enterprise or consumer. Technology is not the impediment, however, the process and cultural obstacles are what need to be addressed, she writes.

Encouraging progress

To address these challenges, there has been some positive encouraging progress over the past year as government leaders challenge the status quo, stressing the imperative to look at commercial SATCOM as the indispensable foundation for the future architecture.

As military leaders continue to emphasise the value of SATCOM as a Service, Rebecca Cowen-Hirsch remains confident that government leaders and lawmakers will recognise that SATCOM as a Service brings distinct, advantageous qualities to the emergent vision.

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