For things to run smoothly on Earth, we often need to look up for some answers – quite literally. It explains why satellite launches and space activities have multiplied in recent times and while the first half of 2020 may have been sluggish for the commercial launch industry, things are expected to accelerate again.
Connectivity and communications have become critical in today’s world not just for businesses and individuals but also for the aid industry, telemedicine and other such sectors. In all these scenarios, satellite has emerged the biggest hero, offering greater and more efficient connectivity than any other technology in the world.
In the Middle East, several new deals to the tune of millions of dollars have been inked for new birds. Arabsat has investments of US $300m in Badr-8 while Yahsat has signed up Airbus to build Thuraya 4-NGS, its new mobile telecommunications system. Inmarsat has two I-6 launches in the pipeline.
On the space side, the UAE has entered the elite league by sending the Hope Probe on its way to Mars. And news has just come in that the UAE intends to send its first Arab mission to the moon by 2024.
We have literally touched the skies with our ambitions and I am so delighted that we have several women also making history in this industry. In fact, SatellitePro ME has had the opportunity to feature three high-profile women in this edition.
From Michaelyn Thomas, the Head of Affordability at Virgin Orbit, which is looking to democratise space with affordable launch services for smaller satellite players to Dr. Adimbola Alale, CEO of Nigcomsat, who is a key influencer in Africa’s space world, and Fatema Ali Al Hajri, who manages the development of new technologies at Yahsat, we have an amazing mix of female leaders in space and satellite segment featured in this issue. Happy reading!