CCW 2022 speaker interview: Jens Specht

Dr. Jens Specht from Inmarsat discusses satellite communication components
CCW 2022 speaker interview: Jens Specht

What will you be speaking about at CCW 2022? Why is that an important topic?

In Australia the emergency services have decided to roll-out a complementary satellite communication component to hundreds of their vehicle, police and ambulances mostly. I would like to provide some insights in the drives and the actual implementation of this service as well as some potential learnings for other regions.

Reliable seamless communication is essential in any emergency. Knowing what is possible and how it can be implemented may attenuate the consequences of an emergency.

What are the key messages that you would like people to take away after attending your conference session?

An adequate emergency communication concept including satcom is essential. This includes the selection of technology that enables the operatives to focus on the job with a minimum of additional training. Technology needs to be intuitive to use.

What do you see as being the big issues and challenges for the sector over the next five years?

Applications and emergency requirements are becoming more and more data hungry. Starting by simple video streaming to VR solutions bringing in remote experts via a data link. Quite a number of the current emergency networks like TETRA cannot provide the data rates needed. Thus, on the one hand, there is the need to modernize those networks. And on the other hand, the tendency to trust critical data to commercial cellular networks, which are neither set-up nor secured for this usage. In case of an emergency, those will often fail for a number of reasons. Consequently a set-up interoperating between different technologies will be required.

What will be the most transformative development in terms of the technology? What will that development mean for user operations, as well as the broader market? 

In our niche of the market we have seen a rapid development in satellite and antenna technology, enabling new business models and connecting mobile users in way which was unthinkable only a few years ago. Connectivity, even in an emergency, will be more widely available. This can enhance the capabilities of the operator on the ground. However, this needs to be balanced by smart but robust systems and interfaces, helping the operator to do the job instead of overloading them with even more technology.

Critical Communications World 2022 takes place between 21-23 June at the Messe Vienna, Austria

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