Satnews Daily
November 27th, 2012

iDirect + NewCom Use The Sun To Brighten Lives In A Dangerous World

[SatNews] With no electricity and using solar-powered computer equipment the satellite network provides interactive programs to 4,267 students located in one of the most remote and volatile regions of Colombia.

  VT iDirect, Inc. (iDirect), a company of VT Systems, Inc. (VT Systems), today announced that NewCom International, a global communications provider, has launched a satellite-powered distance education network, covering 26 schools in the Nudo de Paramillo Region in Northern Colombia. The network is built on the iDirect satellite communications platform and is backed by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and other public and private sector organizations. iDirect is a world leader in satellite-based IP communications technology.

The distance education program is designed to bring stability to an area of Colombia that struggles due to geographical isolation. Through the satellite network, 4,267 students will gain access to a range of interactive online learning programs using solar-powered computer equipment as there is no electricity provided in the area. The network is a critical pilot program that represents a model for expanding education throughout Colombia and the rest of the developing world.

NewCom selected the iDirect Platform based on several key capabilities. The TDMA system can cost-effectively share bandwidth across a wide range of applications from interactive video conferencing and video streaming to online learning tools, as well as basic voice and data access. Network traffic can be easily prioritized based on real-time usage, ensuring that access is available when it is needed. In addition, the iDirect Platform protects the network from rain and other weather conditions that can compromise data quality. iDirect’s modular hub-and-line card design also enables NewCom to minimize capex and opex, expanding the distance education network affordably as new sites come online.

“At NewCom, we are committed to using cutting-edge communications technology to bring life-changing connectivity to people all around the world. Through this program, we are able to give thousands of children a window to the rest of the world and, at the same time, open the door for their communities to connect globally and with local authorities to improve and stabilize their living conditions. We are grateful to work with iDirect on getting this program off the ground and look forward to further opportunities to expand this initiative throughout Colombia,” said Dora Mejia Director of Sales and Business Development, NewCom International

“When it comes to distance education applications, reliability and ease of deployment are essential. With its Evolution network, NewCom can ensure that schools in even the most remote parts of Colombia can access critical connectivity. This project perfectly demonstrates how satellite and other modern technologies can power social change by bringing the world closer together,” said Rob KilroyRegional Vice President, Sales, Americas, iDirect