Sunday, May 14, 2023

EAGLE-1 consortium readies Quantum Cryptography LEO satellite system

EAGLE-1, which is a consortium led by SES and 20 European partners, is developing a quantum cryptography LEO satellite and ground infrastructure that is expected to launch in 2024. Supported by the European Space Agency (ESA) and the European Commission, EAGLE-1 will deliver secure transmission of encryption keys across geographically dispersed areas and connect EU’s national quantum communications infrastructures for truly sovereign networks.

SES has now announced a new key partner, TESAT, responsible for developing and integrating the Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) payload for the EAGLE-1 satellite. Specifically, TESAT will manufacture the QKD payload comprising the Scalable Optical Terminal SCOT80 to establish a secure optical link from space to ground, as well as the QKD module of the satellite.

“EAGLE-1 is a project that will benefit the whole of Europe, and being able to work with the leading technology players in the market to co-develop it and together shape this innovative secure technology is a privilege to SES,” said Ruy Pinto, Chief technology Officer of SES. “The addition of the secure optical links and the actual QKD module brings us closer to implementation, testing and further scaling the technology, that can ultimately serve millions of users. This elevates secure communications to an entirely new level, supporting development of reliable pan-European quantum communications infrastructures.”

“We are delighted to be selected as payload prime by SES and looking forward to bring our expertise in integrating secure technologies, and a track record of almost 80,000 executed optical satellite links for the benefit of this highly-important and timely European project,” said Thomas Reinartz, CEO of TESAT. “The EAGLE-1 system allows for achieving synergies together with leading industry partners, SMEs and institutes, reducing time to service and to market for the quantum secure technologies and its future key users, such as governments and institutions, or banking sector. Together with our partners, we are looking forward to strengthen European collaboration at all levels, including SMEs and institutions and contributing to European sovereignty in space.”

  • Arianespace has been selected to launch the EAGLE-1 satellite in 2024 on a Vega C rocket from Europe's Spaceport in French Guiana.

BlueMed subsea cable lands in Palermo

BlueMed, Sparkle's new cable that will connect Italy with France, Greece and several countries bordering the Mediterranean, has landed in Palermo, thus marking the completion of laying of the Genoa-Golfo Aranci-Pomezia-Palermo Tyrrhenian section. 

BlueMed, which is part of the Blue Submarine Cable System project built in partnership with Google and other operators, has four fibre pairs and an initial design capacity of more than 25 Tbps per pair.  Laying began in January with the branch to Sardinia (Golfo Aranci) and continued between February and March with the shore ends in Pomezia, on the coast of Rome, and in Genoa. From the Ligurian capital, the cable continues southwards to Palermo from where it will proceed through the Strait of Messina and the Mediterranean Sea down to the Red Sea. 

Enrico Bagnasco, CEO of Sparkle, said: “With the landing of BlueMed in Palermo, we complete the laying of the Tyrrhenian section of one of the most advanced digital infrastructures in the world while reinforcing Sicily's centrality in the global Internet system." He added, "Thanks to BlueMed, the Sicily Hub in Palermo is set for further expansion and growth, confirming itself as a strategic asset for the country's digitization and a key hub for data traffic in the Mediterranean region."

NTT Group FY2023 revenue up 8.1%, profit up 3.4%

NTT Group’s consolidated operating revenues for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2023 were 13,136.2 billion yen (an increase of 8.1% from the previous fiscal year), consolidated operating profit was 1,829.0 billion yen (an increase of 3.4% from the previous fiscal year), and consolidated profit attributable to NTT was 1,213.1 billion yen (an increase of 2.7% from the previous fiscal year).

In July 2022, to create synergies through integration, NTT DOCOMO, NTT Communications, and NTT Comware launched a new DOCOMO Group structure.

In October 2022, NTT Group consolidated international business operations under NTT Data.

The consolidated financial forecast for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2024 is as follows: operating revenues of 13,060.0 billion yen, operating profit of 1,950.0 billion yen, and profit attributable to NTT of 1,255.0 billion yen.

Some key metrics

AWS offers Aurora database without I/O charges

Amazon Web Services announced a new configuration for Amazon Aurora that offers improved price performance and predictable pricing for customers with input/output (I/O)-intensive applications. 

The new Aurora configuration allows customers to pay only for their database instances and storage consumption with no charges for I/O operations. 

This allows customers to confidently predict costs for their most I/O-intensive workloads, regardless of I/O variability, helping to accelerate their decision to migrate more of their database workloads to AWS. 

Aurora is a fully managed MySQL- and PostgreSQL-compatible relational database.  AWS said Aurora is in use by hundreds of thousands of customers, including Airbnb, Atlassian, and Samsung, for I/O-intensive applications like payment processing systems, ecommerce, and financial applications.

The new Aurora configuration is now generally available.

ServiceNow acquire G2K for IoT in retail storefronts

ServiceNow agreed to acquire G2K, a privately-held company based in Munich, Germany that processes real-time data across storefronts and other physical spaces. Financial terms were not disclosed.

G2K, which was ounded by Karsten Neugebauer and Omar El Gohary in 2013, uses AI to translate that data into insights that allow organizations to take action. G2K can help businesses plan inventory based on demand, improve on-site customer experiences, address in-store maintenance or other mechanical issues, and increase employee productivity. G2K employs 200+ employees and has operations in multiple countries.

ServiceNow said it plans to add G2K’s smart IoT technology to the Now Platform, enabling businesses to intelligently action digital and in-store data with enterprise-grade workflows.

“ServiceNow is relentlessly focused on co-creating the future of work with our customers,” said Karel van der Poel, senior vice president and general manager at ServiceNow. “Retail is just the beginning. This acquisition allows ServiceNow to create even greater simplicity and efficiency for our customers’ growing needs across any industry, from manufacturing and supply chain to transportation and entertainment.”

"Many retailers are turning to a range of AI point solutions to help reshape retail experiences for employees and customers alike, but this results in fractured operations across the enterprise," said Omar El Gohary, chief technology officer and co-founder at G2K. "Together, G2K and ServiceNow will realize a connected vision for our customers and help transform the world of work for retail and beyond – and we couldn't be more excited about it."

AccelerComm raises £21.5m for 5G FEC optimization

AccelerComm, a start-up based in South Hampton, England announced £21.5m in Series B funding for its 5G channel coding technology.

AccelerComm which was founded in 2016 by Professor Rob Maunder at the University of Southampton, specializes in channel coding, also known as forward error correction. The company’s product suite includes a channel coding IP solution that delivers reduced latency and power consumption for 5G radio baseband processing, and LEOPhy – a complete layer 1 modem that incorporates this technology for low-earth orbit 5G satellite communications. The company has attracted talent from ARM, Qualcomm and Ericsson. AccelerComm notes that it is already working with Vodafone, Intel, AMD and National Instruments.

Tom Cronk, CEO of AccelerComm, states: "From LEO satellite to terrestrial 5G deployments, the challenges of how to maximize the performance of the network, and in particular efficient use of energy and radio spectrum, are universal. Over the past few years, AccelerComm has continually demonstrated its position at the forefront of this technology, working with mobile operators, telecoms equipment vendors and the satellite industry to help supercharge communications. We’re thrilled to receive this backing from a range of industry-leading investors combined with the continued backing ongoing support of our existing shareholders and look forward to the company’s continued rapid growth and innovative development."