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COMSATCOM Acquisition Primer Kick Off

An XTAR Blog Series

Like our fellow American commercial satellite operators, XTAR is deeply embroiled in the debate surrounding COMSATCOM acquisition reform.  As a service provider to U.S. Government users for over a decade, we’ve seen all types of attempted reforms – the entire gamut – from prudence to excess.

A large part of our efforts have – and continue to be – focused on helping bandwidth planners and users prudently plan for and buy what they need. This includes providing a collaborative institutional knowledge base that enables commercial satellite operators to plan and execute investments appropriately, while avoiding erroneous assumptions that prove costly. On both sides.

XTAR co-authored a white paper last year (see the Seven Ways Paper) that laid out seven specific and achievable actions that would result in reduced cost and increased value to the warfighter when satellite communications play a role in the mission. We believe that there are significant savings to be had in this regard. Specifically, the paper outlines tenets to a holistic approach to SATCOM for the military blending both commercial and DoD assets. Because we are patriotic supporters of our troops, we feel we have a duty to seek more effective ways of supplying them with the critical communications capabilities they need to get the job done.

This is a large and complex issue, one that takes more than a few paragraphs to explain.  More so, in view of the seemingly contradictory opinions and actions that simply don’t make sense. In the meantime, we continue debating the “same-old, same-old” spot market approach to bandwidth acquisition, expending increasingly limited funds each month that we could be saving.

We’re going to tackle the issue of COMSATCOM acquisition reform, and a few related concepts, and parse it into some bite-sized chunks that will encourage discussion. Hopefully it will be a real, two-way conversation that might just lead to one or two brilliant ideas of how we can best move forward.  I hope you’ll stay with us as we embark on this path. I want your feedback; I welcome the debate.  No individual, department or company has all the right answers.  The best way for us to tackle this subject is together.