Pacific Skies - Broadband for Asia

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New Skies Satellites, the global satellite operator, and Newtec, technology provider and systems integrator in association with Alcatel Bell Space are combining their expertise and resources in the development of a new two way service offering.

Through the use of New Skies state-of-the-art satellite, NSS-6 and Newtec's innovative 2Way broadband IP access technology, the companies will define, develop, implement and pilot a premium internet access and corporate services product aimed at small/medium enterprises (SMEs) in Asia and the Middle East.


The service, branded IPsys Broadband, offers two way Internet Access for remote corporate sites and will be retailed through ISPs and satellite service providers specialised in the corporate market. The network will support services typically demanded by corporate users, such as virtual private networks (VPNs) suitable for intranet and extranets.

In addition, New Skies and Newtec will develop, with their regional partners, additional applications of value to corporate users to run on top of the basic service offering. The companies will co-operate to develop markets for the open-standard DVB-RCS technology and anticipate that a 'shared hub' approach will help stimulate early adoption of this technology in the fast-growing regional broadband market.


The aim of the Pacific Skies project is to develop and pilot a new service, which it is hoped will ultimately migrate into a sustainable operational business. In order to achieve this, a number of developmental objectives must be met.

Some of these key developments are predominantly technical, such as the development and implementation of rain fade counter measures, essential in the provision of services in regions such as South East Asia, development of turbo coded return carriers, improvements in network synchronisation to permit operation in multiple beams and the implementation of a fully multi-ISP capable platform.

In addition to the technical developments, the pilot phase will be used to demonstrate that multiple service levels can be supported simultaneously with efficient and fair sharing of network resources to users of a given profile and priority. Multiple business models and service levels will be implemented and tested during the pilot phase with the intimate involvement of six regional pilot customers.

Support to corporate VPNs will be verified and multiple pilot user topologies will be analysed and tested.


Through the development and piloting of a new service, IPsys Broadband, the companies will:


  • Allow regional ISPs to provide cost-effective, high bandwidth, high speed and increasingly reliable service to a significantly expanded market simulating the satellite market


  • Enable smaller ISPs and resellers to enter the market or expand their operation in an affordable manner. These potential customers currently do not have the existing aggregation POPs infrastructure and distribution systems.


  • Demonstrate the strategic and essential role of satellites in the world of two-way broadband service delivery in developing markets and regions where terrestrial infrastructure is still limited


  • Limit the migration of customers away from satellite based solutions and towards fibre by providing distance and location independent 'last-mile' network beyond the reach of terrestrial means


  • Implement and demonstrate applications increasingly necessary in the developing world such as tele-medicine, e-governence, integrated and collaborative user portals and distance learning.

The Pacific Skies project will help demonstrate the strategic importance of satellite communications in regions where telecommunications infrastructure is limited and will significantly expand the market for European companies, standards and systems.

Significant technological and product development is required to successfully develop, deploy and demonstrate the IPsys Broadband service. The companies have identified 10 key technical developments and objectives for the pre operational pilot phase that the companies will develop over the course of the 13-month project.

These objectives comprise a combination of technical development, product and service development, empirical data gathering and pilot customer feedback.


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The Pacific Skies development project is planned to last 13 months and is divided into two specific phases; the first 6 months being a service development, definition and pilot preparation phase, and the latter 7 months being the pilot and applications demonstration phase.

Current status

The Pacific Skies project is progressing well with the customer pilot well under way. The Pacific Skies hub was successfully commissioned in Hong Kong in late 2004 and since then more than 40 pilot terminals have been deployed on the network in two different geographical regions.

Five pilot ISP customers are operating a range of services across the Middle East and South East Asia. Feedback from the Pilot ISPs has been extremely positive, in particular from our Middle Eastern ISP and from two pilot customers in Indonesia.

In the reporting period, the South East Asian beam on the NSS-6 satellite has been used to provide emergency telecommunications in the Tsunami affected region of Aceh through the support of two Indonesian pilot ISPs. New Skies and Newtec have agreed continued support to these services for a minimum of six months.

The technical pilots are progressing well, with particular focus on rain fade counter measures and VPN support. New Skies and Newtec are in the process of completing the deployment of pilot terminals with a total system roll out of 75 terminals. We expect to complete the pilot project in October. 

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