Demonstration connecting modem and BUC via digital interface is a milestone towards interoperability
Petah Tikva, Israel and, Herndon, VA., 13 March 2023 – ST Engineering iDirect, a leader in global satellite communications, and Gilat Satellite Networks Ltd. (NASDAQ, TASE: GILT), a worldwide leader in satellite networking technology, solutions and services, announced a successful proof of concept (PoC) of converting analog signals to digital signals utilizing Digital Intermediate Frequency Interoperability (DIFI) 1.1 Standard, developed by the DIFI consortium. The demonstration, held during the Satellite 2023 event in Washington, D.C., lays strong foundations for the goal of interoperability.
The standard provides a path to enable the digital transformation of the space industry by providing interoperability at the IF/RF layer. The standard will enable all manufacturers to build interoperable technologies that work in both open and closed network topologies, resulting in highly flexible networks and enabling the industry to respond rapidly to customer demands.
The two companies demonstrated that an iDirect modulator can output a digitized signal that conforms to the DIFI standard and is interoperable with a BUC from Gilat’s fully owned subsidiary, Wavestream. A DIFI v1.1 link, between the modem and BUC, carries the digitized waveform over a 10 Gbps fiber connection. The modem’s output waveform is DVB-S2X, but the digital link is waveform agnostic. The overall link includes a digital modulator as the data source and a digital input BUC. The traditional analog IF and RF signals are displayed to demonstrate the successful interoperability and reconstruction of the analog waveform from the DIFI stream.
Digitizing the interface between modem and RF components using the new open standard, the industry will be able to leverage the latest virtualization, cloud computing and network function virtualization technologies as well as greatly improve the performance and scale of satellite hub, gateway, and modem equipment.
Frederik Simoens, CTO at ST Engineering iDirect, said, “This PoC implementation of the DIFI standard is an important milestone on our path to virtualization and the realization of the all-digital teleport. Our products with DIFI-compliant interfaces will simplify gateway designs and pave the way for a more flexible and virtualized ground infrastructure.”
Matt Flach, CTO at Wavestream, a Gilat subsidiary, said, “We support the open DIFI standard and are developing innovative solutions at Gilat and Wavestream on both the modem and BUC side. We’re excited to be a part of this interoperability demonstration and believe that this technology will bring with it many advantages, not only at a system level but within the Solid-State Power Amplifier/Block up converter. This standard will bring us new methods for correcting the signal impairments caused by the up-conversion and amplification process.”
About ST Engineering iDirect
ST Engineering iDirect, a subsidiary of ST Engineering, is a global leader in satellite communications (satcom) providing technology and solutions that enable its customers to expand their business, differentiate their services and optimize their satcom networks. With over 40 years of delivering innovation focused on solving satellite’s most critical economic and technology challenges we are committed to shaping the future of how the world connects. The product portfolio, branded iDirect, represents the highest standards in performance, efficiency and reliability, making it possible for its customers to deliver the best satcom connectivity experience anywhere in the world. ST Engineering iDirect is a leader in key industries including mobility, broadcast and military/government. In 2007, iDirect Government was formed to better serve the U.S. government and defense communities. For more information visit www.idirect.net.
Wavestream, a Gilat fully owned subsidiary is the industry leader in the design and manufacture of next generation satellite communications high power transceivers for In Flight Connectivity, Ground Mobility and Gateway markets. Since 2001, we provide system integrators with field-proven, high performance Ka, Ku and X band Solid State Power Amplifiers (SSPAs), Block Upconverters (BUCs), Block Down Converters and Transceivers. We design, manufacture and repair our products in-house and have delivered over 40,000 systems in the past 15 years. Wavestream products provide high quality and reliability under the harshest environmental conditions and we are currently certified to ISO 9001:2008 and AS9100D standards. For further details please visit www.wavestream.com.
Gilat Satellite Networks Ltd. (NASDAQ: GILT, TASE: GILT) is a leading global provider of satellite-based broadband communications.
With over 30 years of experience, we create and deliver deep technology solutions for satellite, ground and new space connectivity and provide comprehensive end-to-end solutions and services, powered by our innovative technology. We believe in the right of all people to be connected and are united in our resolution to provide communication solutions to all reaches of the world.
Delivering high value solutions, our portfolio is comprised of a cloud-based platform and high performance satellite terminals designed to work in harmony with satellite constellations, including Very High Throughput Satellites (VHTS) and Software-Defined Satellites (SDS) in multiple orbits; high performance Satellite On-the-Move (SOTM) antennas; and highly efficient, high-power Solid State Power Amplifiers (SSPA) and Block Upconverters (BUC).
Gilat’s comprehensive solutions support multiple applications with a full portfolio of products to address key applications including broadband access, mobility, cellular backhaul, military, government, and enterprise, all while meeting the most stringent service level requirements. For more information, please visit: www.gilat.com.
Certain statements made herein that are not historical are forward-looking within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The words “estimate”, “project”, “intend”, “expect”, “believe” and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties. Many factors could cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Gilat to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements that may be expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, including, among others, risks associated with the outbreak and global spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic; changes in general economic and business conditions, inability to maintain market acceptance to Gilat’s products, inability to timely develop and introduce new technologies, products and applications, rapid changes in the market for Gilat’s products, loss of market share and pressure on prices resulting from competition, introduction of competing products by other companies, inability to manage growth and expansion, loss of key OEM partners, inability to attract and retain qualified personnel, inability to protect the Company’s proprietary technology and risks associated with Gilat’s international operations and its location in Israel. For additional information regarding these and other risks and uncertainties associated with Gilat’s business, reference is made to Gilat’s reports filed from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission. We undertake no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements for any reason.
About DIFI IF Interoperability Consortium
The Digital IF Interoperability Consortium (DIFI) is an independent, international group of companies, organizations, and government agencies that have an interest in the interoperability of networks and ground systems supporting space-based operations. Launched in coordination with the IEEE-ISTO, DIFI’s mission is to enable the digital transformation of space, satellite, and related industries through a simple, interoperable Digital IF/RF standard that accelerates industry transformation from L-Band IF to Digital IF, while discouraging vendor lock-in. DIFI’s current membership is comprised of over 50 companies and government organizations from across space industry sectors. The founding members of DIFI include Hawkeye 360, Intelsat Corp., Kongsberg Satellite Services AS (KSAT), Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc. (NASDAQ: KTOS), Microsoft, and the U.S. Navy. To learn more about DIFI Consortium including membership information visit https://www.dificonsortium.org.
Gilat Satellite Networks
Doreet Oren, Senior Director Corporate Communications
EK Global IR
Ehud Helft, Managing Partner
ST Engineering iDirect
VP Corporate Marketing