Charity Race Day Raises Over £21,000 for SSAFA

Every year Battlespace organises a charity Race Day at Chepstow in aid of SSAFA, the Armed Forces Charity.

The day consisted of several sponsored races along with hospitality and an auction. In total, it raised over £21,500 for SSAFA.

Spectra Group is a proud sponsor of several Armed Forces charities and is currently working to achieve the Gold Level of the Armed Forces Covenant. The SSAFA Race Day has long been on Spectra’s calendar and, once again, Spectra took a table and a sponsored a race – The Spectra Group Maiden Hurdle.

Spectra Group CEO, Simon Davies, hands over Battlespace Businessman of the Year Award to Ken Peterman of ViaSat.

Spectra Group CEO, Simon Davies, hands over Battlespace Businessman of the Year Award to Ken Peterman of ViaSat.

 

SSAFA provides lifelong support to men and women in the Royal Navy, the Royal Marines, the British Army and the Royal Air Force, and their families. They also work with veterans of all ages to help them settle into life and work outside the Forces.

During the day, as outgoing Battlespace Business Man Of The Year, Simon Davies, Spectra CEO, also presented the 2019 award to Ken Peterman of ViaSat.

Spectra Group Expand Into US with the Opening of New Spectra Group (US) Office in Fairfax County, VA

Spectra Group (UK) Ltd is an internationally renowned specialist provider of secure voice, data and satellite communications systems, specifically optimized for use in remote and challenging environments. Following recent contract successes in the USA, particularly with their battle-winning SlingShot tactical communications system, Spectra Group (UK) Ltd will be establishing Spectra Group (US) Inc in new offices in Fairfax County in Oct 2018. The opening of this new office is to coincide with Spectra (US) exhibiting at AUSA in Washington, 8-10 Oct 2018.

By establishing a permanent presence in the USA, Spectra Group will be able to guarantee closer product support to their existing partners in North America, as well as dedicated product and service support directly to the end-user. Spectra Group aspire to expand their already significant international sales into new sectors not currently covered by existing US partners; a particularly exciting development as, globally, the USA offers the largest Defense, Emergency Response and Homeland Security market.

Spectra’s SlingShot adds voice and data BLOS COTM (Beyond Line of Sight Communications On The Move) to in-service tactical VHF and UHF radios. In addition to standard voice and data C2, it can enable capabilities such as remote biometric analysis, fire mission planning, tracking and inter-agency operations. Man-portable or vehicle-borne, useable on the move, delivering flexible channel leasing and with minimal increase in training-burden, SlingShot redefines tactical communication capabilities.

Recent world-wide exhibits of SlingShot at Africa Endeavour (Cape Verde), Land Forces (Australia), DVD (UK) and Global SOF (Spain) have been met with considerable international interest. Spectra will be following this up with attendance at AUSA, Washington (8th -10th Oct) and Africa Security Symposium, Dakar (7th – 9th Nov).

The launch of Spectra Group (US) Inc in North America will be formally announced at a press briefing taking place at AUSA on Tue 9th Oct. Spectra Group (US) Inc can be found at Booth 3138.

Simon Davies, CEO of Spectra Group said: “Spectra is very excited to be able to announce the opening of an office in Fairfax County. This welcome expansion of our business profile will enable us to forge even closer links with our existing partners and end-users in North America, as well as looking ahead to develop wider markets in the region.”

Spectra exhibit their revolutionary SlingShot communications equipment at DVD 2018

Spectra Group (UK) Ltd, world leading provider of high-grade information security and communication capabilities, will be at the Defence Vehicle Dynamics (DVD) event taking place on 19/20 September 2018 at Millbrook to showcase their revolutionary SlingShot communications system. Working in collaboration with Jankel, SlingShot will be on display in a number of configurations, mounted in Jankel specialist military and civilian vehicles on stand number OR-12.

SlingShot is a unique system that enables UHF and VHF radios to work on L-Band Satellite frequency, allowing users to instantly extend the range of their communications equipment to BLOS (Beyond Line of Sight). Conceived and designed to meet demanding Special Forces requirements, SlingShot also offers a significant number of benefits for conventional and land forces requiring secure, reliable and robust Communications On The Move (COTM). Over 3000 SlingShot systems are in operation world-wide, used by 18 different organisations, including several NATO countries, as Manpack, Vehicle, Maritime and Aviation fits.

In addition to voice, SlingShot enables low latency data capability, supporting mission-critical applications such as artillery fire missions, situational awareness and biometric analysis. With reduced cost compared to traditional TACSAT, increased channel availability, and almost no increase in the training requirement, SlingShot is redefining tactical communications. Spectra has strategic relationships with both Inmarsat, whose L-TAC™ service uses SlingShot, and Airbus, which brands SlingShot as TREx services.

At DVD, the military UHF variant of Spectra’s SlingShot will be exhibited on the Jankel FOX RRV-x, with a standard magmount antenna. The civilian, commercial VHF variant with discrete, low-profile antennas, will be mounted on Jankel’s Toyota-based Civilian Armoured Vehicle (CAV) Land Cruiser 200.

Simon Davies, CEO of Spectra Group said: “Spectra is delighted to be exhibiting SlingShot in collaboration with Jankel. This will allow us to highlight both the military and low-profile variants that will be of interest to any organisations or units that require BLOS COTM capability without drawing attention to their vehicles.”

To see the Spectra SlingShot on display at DVD, visit the Jankel Stand OR-12

Spectra Supports Challenge Wales in the Round the Island Race

The annual Round the Island Race, organised by the Island Sailing Club, is a one-day yacht race around the Isle of Wight, an island situated off the south coast of England. The race regularly attracts over 1,400 boats and around 15,000 sailors, making it one of the largests yacht races in the world.

Competitors come from all over the UK, other parts of Europe and as far away as the USA to follow the 50 nautical mile course round the Isle of Wight. Starting on the famous Royal Yacht Squadron line in Cowes, the fleet races westabout, to The Needles, round St Catherine’s Point and Bembridge Ledge buoy, and back into the Solent to the finish line at Cowes.

Spectra Group (UK) attended the event in partnership with Inmarsat Global Government to provide broadband satellite communications support to Challenge Wales.

After an impressive race, Challenge Wales finished beating again the other Challenge 72’s and the Clipper fleet, with an elapsed time of 11 hours 34 minutes and 36 seconds, 18th in class and 283rd overall (out of 1,204).

Ian Gameson, a Spectra Senior Systems Engineer present on the day, had the following to say:

Fantastic day had by all Spectra and Inmarsat Global Government guests hosted by the Skipper and crew on Challenge Wales. It was really nice to be on board as crossed the line back into Cowes, continuing her winning streak against her “sister ships” in this race.

The warm, welcoming environment and quiet competence of Andy and the crew was the perfect environment to learn and bond despite the stress of race conditions with all guests and crew feeling part of the same team.

Ian Gameson, Senior System Engineer

Spectra Group (UK)

You can read more about Challenge Wales and their performance on the day here.

You can view the the Round the Island Race official leader-board here.

Spectra Group supports Challenge Wales

Spectra Group have recently announced their support of the award-winning sail training charity, Challenge Wales. Together with their partners, Inmarsat and NSSL, Spectra Group are providing the Challenge Wales yachts with broadband satellite communication capabilities.

Dee Caffari, Skipper of Volvo Ocean Race team “Turn The Tide on Plastic”, after introducing the Challenge Wales Young Person’s Environmental Project”

 

The satellite communications systems that are being provided to the charity will enable those onboard the two yachts to enjoy increased security and safety as well as enjoy an offshore broadband data service. The data service will allow Challenge Wales to increase their profile and social media presence by sharing video whilst at sea.

 

Challenge Wales is an award-winning sail training charity which operates Challenge Wales | Wales’ Tall Ship (the 72-foot round the world racing yacht) and Adventure Wales (the 60 foot two masted schooner). The charity helps those who step aboard to develop their personal and social skills, giving people a purpose and helping to broaden their horizons, a goal to strive towards, the opportunity to experience the highs of achievement and success and sometimes the lows of failure. Teamwork, leadership, discipline, respect for others and communication skills are all developed while onboard one of their vessels. Challenge Wales provides controlled life-learning for those aged 12 – 25 years.

Spectra’s Ian Gameson and Damian Lewis of Inmarsat with Challenge Wales’ skipper, Andy Hall. Spectra has joined with Inmarsat and NSSL Global to equip Challenge Wales and Adventure Wales with offshore broadband communications.

Simon Davies, CEO of spectra Group said: “we’re very pleased to be able to help Challenge Wales in this way as they are a charity based close to home and we believe they share our company ethos of teamwork, personal development and communication”. He added: “together with our partners, Inmarsat and NSSL, we’re proud to be able to help such a fantastic charity by giving them the safety critical communication capabilities we are providing to military, security and emergency services, across the globe”.

Spectra Group announces latest sales figures of the SlingShot BLOS COTM System at Eurosatory 2018

Spectra Group (UK) Ltd, world leading solutions provider of high grade information security and communication capabilities continues to expand its SlingShot business with just over 600 SlingShot systems having been ordered across 4 continents since November 2017. Just over 450 systems have already been delivered with a further 211 orders awaiting completion. Since the system was launched, this brings the total number of systems shipped to over the 3000 mark across 18 different end-users organisations, further endorsing Spectra’s dominant position in the Tactical SATCOM market place.

Spectra’s SlingShot is a unique low SWaP system that enables in-service U/VHF tactical radios to utilise Inmarsat’s commercial satellite network for BLOS COTM. Including omnidirectional antenna for the man, vehicle, maritime and aviation platforms, the tactical net can broadcast over 1000s kilometers between forward units and a rear HQ, no matter how or where the deployment. In addition to C2 voice, the system enables data capability, supporting mission critical applications such as; artillery fire missions, GPS tracking and biometric analysis. With reduced cost compared to traditional TACSAT, increased channel availability and almost no increase in the training burden, SlingShot is redefining tactical communications. Spectra has strategic relationships with both Inmarsat, whose L-TAC™ service uses SlingShot and Airbus, which brands SlingShot as TREx services.

 

Spectra’s SlingShot will be available to view on the Airbus stand Hall 5A stand No. C158 at Eurosatory under the brand name of TREx.

 

Simon Davies, CEO at Spectra Group (UK) Ltd said: “we’re very proud of the figures we’ve announced today that prove, again, that SlingShot is fast becoming the system of choice for use by the world’s finest specialist users” He added: “we’re receiving significant amounts of interest in our products and services from around the globe so having our capabilities show-cased by our partners at Eurosatory 2018 is another fantastic opportunity for visitors to understand the advantages of our systems”.

Spectra Helping Local Charities

Earlier this year Spectra Group reaffirmed its commitment to charity by supporting Herefordshire fundraisers The Merry Millers in raising funds for St Michael’s Hospice.

Spectra believes firmly in giving back and is a long-term supporter of Soldiering On, SSAFA and more recently, Team Army. So when The Merry Millers, fundraisers-extraordinary of Herefordshire, approached Spectra to support local charity St Michael’s Hospice, the company was more than happy to help out by donating for auction a day in its private box at Herefordshire Race Course.

Bid winner Frank Green with Simon and Paul Davies of Spectra Group.

St Michael’s Hospice provides Inpatient Services and hospice daycare in addition to supporting patients in a range of settings, including their homes. The Merry Millers, well known within the county for their stellar fundraising activities,  chose the Hospice as the beneficiaries for their mini-event at Hereford Racecourse on March 27th. Frank Green made the winning bid for Spectra’s private box and, overall, more than £2500 was raised on the day.

Inmarsat Government wins MSUA Mobility Innovation Award for L-TAC™, incorporating Spectra’s SlingShot®

Inmarsat Government (L-TAC) has won the “Top Government Mobility Satcom Innovation” category in the Mobile Satellite Users Association’s (MSUA) 2018 Mobility Innovation Awards for its L-band Tactical Satellite (LTAC) service.

The L-TAC service provides an L-Band satellite channel that can, in combination with the SlingShot system from Spectra Group (UK) Ltd, provide global beyond line of sight (BLOS) communications on the move (COTM), on any platform or in a dismounted role, for military Ultra High Frequency (UHF) and Very High Frequency (VHF) users. There is also a SlingShot system available for commercial VHF frequencies. Using in-service tactical radios, the L-TAC/SlingShot solution enables secure voice and data capability on existing radio networks across any operating area without requiring additional user-provided terrestrial infrastructure.

Steff Taylor (third from the right) of Spectra joins Inmarsat’s Government team in accepting the MSUA Award at Satellite 2018

The service is implemented using a single hop through the Inmarsat-4 satellite system via directly connected L-band uplinks and downlinks, providing users with the same experience as operating with UHF satellite communications, but through a cost-effective L-band satellite channel and adding the vital capability of COTM.

“Government users around the world must have access to reliable communication capabilities, whether they are in an airplane or vehicle, on a boat or on foot, and our L-TAC service is empowering these communications – even in the most austere environments,” said Steve Gizinski, Chief Technology Officer, Inmarsat Government.

With the changing nature of military action, forces acting asymmetrically require a highly coordinated strategy that relies heavily on reliable and secure communications systems. If organisations are working in Coalition and are using different communication frequencies, SlingShot enables their disparate systems to all work over L-TAC, unifying the communications net.

This is why L-TAC/SlingShot is already in use by a large proportion of NATO armed forces, supporting operations around the world and providing mission-critical command and control and coalition interoperability.

The commercial variant provides capability for police, fire and medical support services, emergency services, aid agencies, embassy communications, border patrol and other civilian agency use in support of humanitarian assistance, disaster relief operations and other multi-department requirements.

Spectra’s SlingShot

SlingShot allows in-service tactical radios to operate over L-Band providing BLOS COTM for seamless secure tactical and strategic Command & Control communications.

Small, lightweight and drawing low power, SlingShot can be used on any platform, providing a game-changing capability, extending tactical communications to where it is needed. SlingShot’s omni-directional antenna enable personnel travelling on foot, in vehicles on water or air, to maintain communications where other systems fail.

With reduced cost compared to traditional TACSAT, increased channel availability and minimal increase in the training burden SlingShot and L-TAC are redefining tactical communications.

“We are delighted to be part of Inmarsat Government’s winning of the Top Government Mobility Satcom Innovation Award.

Using Inmarsat’s world leading global constellation of geostationary satellites, SlingShot gives the unique capability to access single-hop real-time Beyond Line of Sight Communications, with no need for terrestrial infrastructure, no matter where you need to be.”

 Simon Davies

Spectra CEO

You can read more about SlingShot here, for enquiries, or to book a demonstration, please get in touch.

Spectra Group Sponsors Golf Meeting for the Blandford Garrison Golfing Society

 

On the 20th of September Spectra Group (UK) Ltd continued their support of the Blandford Garrison Golfing Society (BBGS) by sponsoring their Autumn ‘away day’ event in Dorchester. This is the 3rd year in a row Spectra has sponsored a Blandford Garrison golf meeting, demonstrating a long-standing commitment and appreciation of the society.

Based out of Ashley Wood Golf Club Dorset, the society’s aim is to promote golf within the Blandford base (home of the Royal Signals) and the local community, which it has done for many years whilst also providing support for ex-servicemen and women. The society currently consists of 55 people who are all either current Blandford Camp members or ex-armed forces who reside in the local area.

The Autumn event took place at the Came Down golf club, where 24 society golfers took part in a competitive singles round and pairs round throughout the day, separated by lunch at the clubhouse.

Blandford Camp is also the headquarters of the Defence College of Communications and Information Systems (DCCIS) – making Spectra, a leading  supplier of secure satellite services and critical communications systems to the British Army, a natural fit to sponsor the event.

Spectra CEO Simon Davies, who has attended previous BGGS golf days (and has a strong handicap of 14!), stated that the events provide an important opportunity to receive feedback from users – in addition to being thoroughly enjoyable days out.

Lieutenant Colonel Mick Boyle, president of BGGS said “We are very pleased to have continued sponsorship from organisations with direct armed forces links like Spectra. They enable us to carry out the work we want to do; to continue to promote the sport of Golf within the camp and local area”.

Spectra looks forward to supporting the Blandford Garrison Golfing Society and similar events in the near future.