ERCIM News No.28 - January 1997

GMD Launches International Satellite Earth Stations

by Sepideh Chakaveh

A new satellite infrastructure will provide several countries in Eastern Europe with faster means for Multimedia data stream trans-portation. Multiserve, a project sponsored by the European Union (EU) on the framework of the COPERNIKUS programme (Co-operation in Science and Technology with Central and Eastern European Countries), is going to improve co-operation between Western and Eastern Europe.

The main objectives of the Multiserve project (COPERNICUS Project EU number 1454) is to initiate and to integrate Research and Development in the area of communication technology as well as the demonstration and usage of information services within the Eastern European countries in partnership with the European Union. This implies that multiple sites in Central and Eastern Europe are devised to develop scientific information services on top of Information Technology Protocols using satellite links. The strategic goals of the project are two folds, namely:

Multiserve comprises of the following partners:

For most of these locations Multiserve is the first ever means of obtaining satellite communication links.

Multiserve transmitting station in Sophia, Bulgaria.

Technical concepts for Multiserve in short is to establish three up link and three down link stations on a VSAT star (Very Small Aperture Terminal) network with GMD, Sankt Augustin as the centre of this node.

Whereas the uplink stations ie Bucharest, Sofia and Moscow will receive as well as broadcast using the satellite Ku band, Multiserve downlink stations namely St. Petersburg, Vilnius and Bratislava receive via satellite and transmit using internet. It is now completed and it is fully operational. This entails an additional element of developing all the appropriate computing and networking tools to ensure the success of a completely functional, stand alone system of networks.

In parallel to establishing the infrastructures numerous challenging multimedia applications are developed in GMD to exploit the full potentials of the network. Current applications range from tele-cooperation to distant education with recognised final degree certificates. Two Multiserve applications which are already available on internet are on-line TV/Radio and computer processed Satellite weather maps for Eastern Europe.

Please contact:
Sepideh Chakaveh - GMD
Tel: +49 2241 14 2608

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