December 9, 2021

A Strategic Partnership in the Move to the Cloud

Microsoft Azure cloud platform

Today we are excited to announce our partnership with Microsoft Azure Space!!

Through this collaboration, we will leverage the Azure software radio tools to enable our satcom solutions through the Azure cloud platform. This represents a major milestone in our strategic direction that will lead to the virtualization and cloudification of our satcom platform. Through Proof of Concepts (PoCs), testing and milestones, Microsoft Azure Space and ST Engineering iDirect will innovate to bring the unique attributes of satellite to the cloud.

Move to the Cloud – What does this mean for our industry?

Microsoft Azure cloud platformAs the satellite industry adopts cloud-based infrastructure there are concurrent technology innovation trends that are pushing satellite toward the cloud as a means of reaching its full potential. At the same time, the industry is moving away from traditional GEO satellite architectures and toward highly flexible digitized high throughput satellites and new MEO/LEO/HEO constellations. This newer generation of satellites will require a more scalable, flexible, and secure infrastructure solution, and the cloud meets those requirements.

The next generation of satellite communication systems will demand fundamental cloud elasticity.

These seismic changes are driving the satellite industry to innovate as never before, because satellite technology is critical in the delivery of the cloud services that are transforming the enterprise landscape. Satellite is going to be imperative as enterprises that are embracing digitalization need ubiquitous cloud access—a service that in many places can only be achieved with satellite networks.

There are many advantages to cloud-based architectures for our customer including the ability to scale and build out their operations; to heighten security, to access cloud-based management tools and to open-up avenues of opportunity and grow revenue streams.

Achieving our Vision: Transforming satellite service delivery

At ST Engineering iDirect we believe that the cloudification of our ground segment starting with a cloud-based NMS and making our modems more software-defined will enable a fully digitized and virtualized infrastructure transforming the economics, engagement models, and technologies for the satellite industry and will rapidly expand the accessibility of satellite communications around the world.

Our development partnership will take a phased approach to enabling our satcom solutions on the Microsoft Azure platform. This will involve the migration of the network management system onto the Microsoft Azure public cloud, followed by the virtualization of our modem so that it may be deployed on a Microsoft Azure Stack on-premises solution. This will enable Azure to offer the strongest quality of experience and allow seamless access to the cloud, everywhere.

Our relationship with Microsoft Azure Space is an important steppingstone in executing on our company vision: “To make it possible for customers to build multi-orbit strategies on the world’s first cloud-based, multi-access technology platform.”

Ultimately, our goal is to transform satellite service delivery so that it’s perfectly seamless, significantly more economical, infinitely scalable, and can deliver whatever data rate and functionality is needed for any possible application that satellite connectivity can support. We are also of the strong belief that technologies developed around a broader ecosystem and in partnership with key players will accelerate the transformation of our global connectivity fabric that integrates seamlessly with telecom to enable 5G.

Therefore, we are thrilled and honored to be collaborating with such a high profile and innovative partner such as Microsoft Azure Space to continue to lead and enable this transformation for our industry and customers.