Archives: December 2013
From all of us at Norsat, we would like to wish you and yours a happy and healthy
holiday season, and all the best for 2014. We would like to thank all of our loyal customers and partners for your continued support.
In Stock Items, Ready to Ship!
We are pleased to offer a wide range of in-stock microwave products that are ready to ship. Above are some of the items we have available. Contact us for more information on pricing and other products available, or to place your order.
Norsat M2M Solutions
Norsat was at OilComm 2013 in November demonstrating our M2M solution; Sentinel RMC to key players in the Oil & Gas industry. The Sentinel RMC provides real-time data monitoring and control using a variety of communication services for data access from anywhere in the world. This complete end to end solution is the ideal platform for any application that requires real-time monitoring and control.
Norsat is proud to announce that last month, we received an order for $6.3M from Harris for our new ATOM Series of Ku Band Solid State Power Amplifiers. The ATOM SSPAs were chosen because they boast compact size, remote control capability and low life cycle costs which differentiate them from other SSPAs currently on the market. FOr more information on our ATOM line of high efficiency BUCs and SSPAs click here.
Customer Focus: Disaster Truck
In our most recent Customer Case Study, one of our customers shares with us his passion for communication, and how Norsat has helped enable his fascinating freelance career. Roger Hawkins is the President and founder of Disaster Truck, and uses a Norsat NewsLink terminal to capture and broadcast breaking news events around the world. Click here to find out more about Disaster Truck’s work using a Norsat fly-away terminal.
Norsat in the News…
Business in Focus BIF covers top Canadian businesses, and recently interviewed our President & CEO Dr. Amiee Chan for a feature article that outlines Norsat’s position as a leader in the satellite communications industry.
PROFIT Magazine Our CEO discusses how to spike your sales by taking the niche approach in this article which covers international companies and their strategies for achieving long term growth.
PROFIT/Chatelaine W100 Dr. Amiee Chan ranked #7 on this esteemed list which celebrates Canada’s top 100 female entrepreneurs of 2013.
Women’s Executive Network (WXN)– Dr. Chan wins yet another award for being among Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women in 2013. These awards celebrate the professional achievements of women across the country. Dr.Chan was also featured on the cover of The Financial Post as a result of her win.
Disaster Truck Case Study -click here for the full case study.
Roger Hawkins is the President and founder of the freelance telecommunications organization, Disaster Truck. Disaster Truck utilizes Norsat’s flyaway satellite terminal, The NewsLink, to capture and broadcast breaking news events globally. Roger describes Disaster Truck as a fantasy. “It is a symbol for hard working freelance photographers and news gatherers who risk their lives to capture events so that the public can have access to truthful information about what is really happening in the world”. These stories provide the public with information that they could not otherwise see or have access to. His use of the iconic image of the World War II “Duck” (an amphibious vehicle that could go anywhere during times of crisis) implies that Disaster Truck can act as a beacon of hope by providing key communications in challenging situations.
Roger Hawkins’ broadcasting career started when he joined CBS News as a satellite coordinator in 1987. He didn’t know much about satellites at the time, since his previous career was installing and maintaining local area computer networks. Satellite technology took off right around the time Roger began working as a remote news producer, initiating live shots from reporters for CBS affiliates in the US, and 77 foreign clients around the world.
Disaster Truck- The Early Years
In 2005, Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans. Roger explains how he was “disappointed at how little the US did as a country in terms of rescue and rehabilitation”. He recalls that at that time, the world just watched as “hundreds died waiting to be rescued”. That was when he conceptualized Disaster Truck, a telecommunications organization that would provide news organizations with the ability to broadcast breaking news events around the world during times of crisis. He looked for a high quality transportable unit and through a contact at CBS, he found out about Norsat’s flyway terminals. In 2006 he purchased a Norsat NewsLink flyaway VSAT terminal – a ruggedized, lightweight and portable terminal designed for news gathering in challenging environments. He bought the unit without knowing how to operate it, and without even having a prospective project. In April of 2007, The Associated Press’ Middle Eastern Services unit was asked to broadcast live shots from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba to cover the military hearings for certain foreign detainees. A freelance cameraman and colleague of Roger’s alerted the Associated Press of Roger’s recently acquired Newslink, and three days later, they were broadcasting live from the famous naval base. The foreign television journalists included two Australian television networks, the CBC, France 24, as well as Al Jazeera and Al-Arabiya from the Middle East. Over the next 20 months, Roger would return to Guantanamo Bay four more times for the Associated Press.
Roger says that this was when he realized the significance of his Norsat NewsLink terminal in facilitating his missions. Being rugged, portable and airline checkable, he remarked that he could pack it up at a moment’s notice and take it with him anywhere in the world.
Earthquake in Haiti
In January 2010, a 7.0 magnitude earthquake devastated Haiti. Although CBS owned three Newslink terminals, none of them were close enough to the Caribbean island to begin broadcasting quickly. CBS chartered a plane to fly into the Dominican Republic overnight with Roger and his NewsLink terminal. The generator however, did not arrive with the terminal. Unable to generate enough power, they industriously wired up two Haitian taxi cabs and were able to create enough electricity to power the uplink and camera. Arriving 21 hours later was the prominent American reporter, Katie Couric, to cover the devastation. During his time in Haiti, Japan’s national public broadcasting organization, NHK, asked him to work with their organization. Roger formed some strong partnerships with NHK Japan and they hired him four more times following the Haiti earthquake.
Only two months after the Haitian earthquake in 2010, there was an 8.8 Magnitude earthquake in Conceptión, Chile. Roger travelled with the team at NHK to the roughest parts of Chile to stream live to New York and through a cable back to Japan. One of the reasons NHK hired Roger and Disaster Truck was because he was willing to go to lengths that others simply wouldn’t. He credits the Norsat NewsLink with enabling him to do this, by allowing him to access communications in areas where infrastructure was damaged or non-existent.
Also in 2010, the infamous Copiapo, Chile mine collapse occurred. Roger was present with NHK, arriving at the beginning and staying until after the rescue. He recalled that “When the rescuers completed a hole approximately 18 inches in diameter to send down food and water, NHK sent down a video camera. We showed them how to use the camera and for two and a half weeks they were able to interview each other and record messages for their loved ones who were waiting for them to be rescued”. They were able to cut 60 hours of video tape from the miners and subsequently made an Emmy-Award winning documentary on their experience.
Disaster Truck and Norsat
Disaster Truck has relied heavily on Norsat technology and support to capture these news events, and the Norsat NewsLink terminal has travelled with Roger all over the globe to capture it all. Roger claims that throughout his fascinating freelance career, he has always found “Norsat equipment to be rugged and reliable enough to function in any environmental condition”. The US Military has also chosen Norsat for many of the same reasons. Roger recalled one instance at the Naval Station in Guantanamo Bay, when he found that a small part had been damaged during a trip back from China. Fortunately, the Joint Task Force at Guantanamo Bay had the same Norsat terminal. The Military let Roger borrow their part and he was then able to get his terminal working again. Roger also notes that Norsat customer support has been helpful and responsive when answering his questions. Roger says that he is constantly pushing the terminal to its limits- demanding more and more out of it with each mission. “It’s not a problem with Norsat, they have a can-do attitude right along with me and we work together. Norsat customer support is stellar. I always say that if there isn’t a way, just keep trying, and they get that,” says Roger. “They have really gone above and beyond with any request I’ve ever had”.
Norsat completed an upgrade for Roger when he needed a new RF transmitter module (BUC). “I was originally working with a 25 Watt BUC and I upgraded to an 80 Watt BUC in 2010. I can say with confidence that this has been the best modification I could have made to the product” he stated. With the 80 Watt upgrade, he easily doubled his bandwidth to 9 MB, with power in reserve, in most locations on the globe. “This upgrade turned a terminal I was already pleased with into an extremely high powered unit that I have used to cover news events all over the world” said Roger. The most recent upgrade made for Roger’s NewsLink was the migration to an MPEG 4 encoder/modulator which enabled him to produce a true HD television signal without the use of any external equipment. This improved HD NewsLink travels in three suitcases and can be easily operated by one individual.
Ease of Use
Besides excellent customer support, Roger noted how easy the terminal has been to use. When he was in Concepción, Chile covering the earthquake, he was in front of an apartment building that had split right in half. He was able to set up his Norsat NewsLink on the sidewalk and find the satellite between two large buildings. Many times, his team was so far south that the satellite was only 20 degrees above the horizon, which would have normally made satellite acquisition difficult. The Norsat NewsLink had no trouble acquiring the satellite and transmission was underway in a matter of minutes
What’s Next for Disaster Truck?
Disaster Truck has recently been busy covering conferences of UN peace groups working in conflicted areas around the globe. As of late, its coverage has focused most heavily on resolution of Israel- Palestine conflict. Disaster Truck is currently going through a period of re-conceptualization, inquiring into different ways to illuminate the work of Non-Government Organizations who provide peace keeping services worldwide.
Communication is our Passion
Norsat is committed to helping customers get the most out of their products, and Disaster Truck embodies Norsat’s mission of being a leading provider of innovative communication solutions that enable the transmission of data, audio and video for remote and challenging applications. Disaster Truck’s mantra is to always be able to supply real, unbiased information to the people no matter what the risk, or environmental limitation. To find out more about Disaster Truck, visit www.disastertruck.com.
We are constantly expanding our leading portfolio of high quality microwave components. We were pleased to add the following products to our catalog in 2013.Our large selection is just one of the reasons why Norsat is the world’s leading brand of microwave products.
Below are a few of the high-quality, fully tested products we have available in stock:
Click here to contact us online or call 1.800.644.4562 for more information or to place your order.
Norsat President & CEO, Dr. Amiee Chan has been selected as the recipient of several awards this year including Women’s Executive Network: Top 100 Most Powerful Women, PROFIT/Chatelaine W100, Women of Influence Magazine Top 25, and ViaSatellite Excellence Awards. Dr. Chan was revealed as a recipient of the Women’s Executive Network 2013 Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Awards. Co-Presented by Scotiabank and KPMG, these Awards celebrate and highlight the professional achievements of the most successful women across the country in the private, public and not-for-profit sectors. The full list of WXN’s 2013 Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award Winners can be found at https://www.wxnetwork.com/top-100/top-100-women/. Dr. Chan will be profiled on the cover of the Financial Post on December 4th, 2013 as a result of the win.
A further win for the company was Dr.Chan’s ViaSatellite 2013 Excellence Award which salutes the innovative companies, technologies, campaigns and people who’ve helped shape the success of the global satellite industry. Dr. Chan received the award for ‘Woman in Technology’ as a result of her work in the satellite communications industry as both an accomplished engineer and prominent business leader. The winners will be honored at a special winner’s breakfast hosted on March 13th 2014 at the SATELLITE 2014 show.
She is also featured in the November edition of Women of Influence Magazine as a recipient of the Top 25 Women of Influence distinction. Now in its third year, the ranking is designed to celebrate and showcase the achievements of the most influential Canadian women in business, health, non-government organizations, professional services, and the public sector over the course of the last year. The winners have not only made a significant difference in their fields, but are exceptionally influential within the community. Dr. Chan was recognized for her extensive work in encouraging young women’s involvement in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.
Dr. Amiee Chan stated, “It is a pleasure to see years of hard work recognized by these awards. I am deeply honored by each one, and hope that I can continue to contribute to my industry and community for years to come”.