Coordinated Digital Transformation in Space and on the Ground
There is huge disruption happening in the satellite industry right now, driven by major cloud providers and a shift in consumer demand. Over recent years we have seen massive amounts of innovation in space. This started with the global proliferation of high throughput satellites and has been followed by smallsats, multi-orbit and multi-band network architectures, as well as software-defined satellite payloads and electric propulsion.
Now the ground segment is having to play catch-up. Digital transformation at the ground is starting to happen and is needed to keep satellites relevant in an ever more connected world. Initiatives like the Digital Intermediate Frequency Interoperability (DIFI) Consortium will be key, as it is aiming to provide a simple, open, interoperable Digital IF/RF standard that replaces the natural interoperability of analog IF signals and helps prevent vendor lock-in.