Satellite Communication-at-Sea

Cobham SATCOM’s Sea Tel Recognised by Mobile Satellite Pioneer Awards for Contribution to Maritime Satcom

The Mobile Satellite Users Association (MSUA) has presented Mobile Satellite Pioneer Awards to Sea Tel founder Robert J Mathews and Sea Tel engineer of 26 years, Pete Blaney.

Satellite 2015, Washington DC - The Mobile Satellite Users Association (MSUA) has presented Mobile Satellite Pioneer Awards to Sea Tel founder Robert J Mathews and Sea Tel engineer of 26 years, Pete Blaney. Now a product line offered by Cobham SATCOM, Sea Tel has been a driving force within the maritime satcom industry for over 35 years. The awards were presented at the MSUA's Satellite 2015 luncheon in Washington DC today (17 March 2015).


The awards recognise the pair's and Sea Tel's contribution to the development of mobile satellite technology and are specifically for 'development of the first maritime stabilized satcom system'. Sea Tel has been a pioneer in the maritime satellite world since it began in 1979, when founder Robert J. Matthews designed the first mechanically stabilized antenna pedestals for the fledgling INMARSAT-A mobile satellite communications system. Pete Blaney joined Sea Tel, shortly after working with Robert throughout the eighties, to further develop maritime satcom capabilities.


 CS_MSUA_Awards 2015


In 1993, under Pete's direction as Chief Engineer, Sea Tel introduced the first fully electronic, servo-stabilized maritime pedestal, the 1893, used by several OEM suppliers on INMARSAT Standard-M antennas. The following year, the 2494 was introduced, the first Ku-band DIRECTV stabilized maritime pedestal that allowed small boat owners to receive satellite TV under motion.


The next pioneering innovation occurred in 1996 when the Sea Tel 96 series fully closed loop stabilized pedestals were released. This advancement increased the pointing accuracy from 1.0 to 0.1 degrees allowing a Tx/Rx system to operate at Ku-Band under the most severe ship motions. The Sea Tel 9797 2.4m C-Band antenna followed the next year, which became, and still is, the industry standard antenna for Maritime C-Band communications. 


Sea Tel, Inc. was acquired by Cobham in 2005. And since 2012 has been part of Cobham SATCOM.  While RJ left Sea Tel in 2008, Pete and the former Sea Tel R&D organization are today responsible for Cobham SATCOM's large and bespoke VSAT antennas and TVRO, which are engineered in Concord, California and continue to be sold to customers in the merchant, offshore and yachting sector under the Sea Tel product line.


"I am proud to be a key contributor to Sea Tel's pioneering advancements in the maritime VSAT industry and honored to be presented with this award," said Pete. "As part of Cobham SATCOM, the pioneering spirit of Sea Tel products is still alive, with the recent introduction of two types of dual band antennas. Our QOR platform that uses two optimized feed and reflectors mounted 90 degrees apart and our subreflector switched antenna that uses one reflector for both bands. Both new technologies are representative of Cobham SATCOM's position at the forefront of maritime communications technology development."


About Cobham

Cobham protects lives and livelihoods with its differentiated technology and know-how, operating with a deep insight to customer needs and agility. The Group offers an innovative range of technologies and services to solve challenging problems across commercial, defence and security markets, from deep space to the depths of the ocean. It has market leading positions in air-to-air refuelling; aviation services; audio, video and data communications, including satellite communications; defence electronics; life support and mission equipment. The most important thing Cobham builds is trust.


About Cobham SATCOM

Cobham SATCOM develops, manufactures, sells and supports satellite and radio communication terminals and earth stations for land, marine and airborne applications. With the ever increasing demand for communication, our products and services are used to satisfy the needs of a wide variety of commercial, governmental and recreational applications.


Cobham SATCOM uses state-of-the-art technologies to design affordable, highly reliable high performance systems that have decreased over time in terms of size, weight and power consumption. Our products enable people to stay in touch under the most challenging and demanding conditions. When traditional communication technologies fail, Cobham SATCOM's products will keep providing our customers with high quality voice, data, and multimedia communications.


Our product designs have evolved tremendously during their decades in service in use around the world in a variety of domains and environments. We market under the AVIATOR, EXPLORER, SAILOR® and Sea Tel brands. Please refer to our websites for our list of global distributors and partners. Cobham SATCOM has design, development and manufacturing facilities in Denmark, South Africa and the USA.


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Casper Jensen
Vice President, Business Development
+45 3955 8815


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