The European Space Agency has given Inmarsat, a satellite communications provider, a three-year deal in which the company will create a platform for governments to strategize, acquire, operate and oversee the communications among their satellites with service providers and other satellite operators. The agreement is worth $26 million, which will be spread over the three years in which the contract will be active.

Inmarsat’s International Virtual Satellite Operators Network (Invision) will be the platform over which the activities mentioned above will take place. The European Space Agency is promoting this program as its Space Systems for Safety, Security, and Strategic Line (4S), a component of the Advanced Research in Telecommunication Systems (ARTES) of ESA. These programs will revitalize ESA and make it a hub for research and development to generate new commercial products and services.

The Invision program will be a platform where the government can launch its space operations and software that its staff can run efficiently. This move will prevent software crashes and an added expense of training the staff to run these resources. Additionally, Invision will be facilitating the upcoming diverse introduction of technological aspects that will be observing the facilities and resources developed in Norway and the UK as a pilot program.  

Furthermore, Invision will facilitate the bandwidth’s optimization to meet the software demands and satellite imagery details. The government plans to utilize this platform while preparing for the upcoming Highly Elliptical Orbit satellites to meet the arctic region’s needs. Nick Shave, an executive with the Global Government’s Strategic Programmes, stated that the satellite services working under Invision must prove to be reliable for the government to implement it on a large scale. The government will be able to access secure satellite services, which it has mostly depended on multiple operators and utilities at a higher fee. The commercial service providers will provide the satellite services at subsidized rates, and the government will be able to support them when they require a revamp or when it deems fit.  

Inmarsat will be heading a team of companies from the UK and Norway, including SINTEF, AnsuR, Global RadioData Communications, Geonor, Satellite Applications Catapult, and MConnected, among others. The company’s chief executive stated that they anticipate more collaborations with other companies that want to benefit from the services of Invision. 

The head of Telecommunications and Integrated Applications at ESA, Elodie Viau, explained that they are excited to unveil this program’s operation to service the companies in Canada and Europe. Additionally, the investors will cash into programs that align with this program seeing that they will benefit from the services of a reliable platform that the government can access. To sum up, ESA explained that this initiative would accelerate the development of Europe’s satellite telecommunications industry. The agency hopes that the Inmarsat plan can proceed effectively without hitches.

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