A collaboration between German satellite provider Satlynx and Middle East satellite operator Arabsat will provide the Central Bank of Iraq with a new, fully redundant satellite network that will provide the foundations of an extensive communications platform.
The solution is based on the Satlynx Direct satellite platform, built around iDirect technology, with the main hub based at Satlynx’s fully secured Teleport in Leuk, Switzerland. The Satlynx Direct platform enables two-way communications between the main sites in Baghdad and the remote sites throughout Iraq.
Full redundancy is provided at every level of the network, with two satellite terminals installed each location and satellite coverage provided primarily via Arabsat’s BADR-4 @ 26°East, with a hot stand-by option on a secondary satellite system.
The decision to base the network on satellite rather than terrestrial connections was an easy one given the unreliability of the infrastructure that remains after decades of neglect and the destruction that has taken place during the recent upheaval in Iraq.
“The lack of infrastructure…meant that we had to cope with frequent power outages throughout the installation stages, but nonetheless, we were able to get the job done and deploy a secure and working network thanks to the Satlynx solution”, said Mr Salar Zahed, Vice President & Director of Marketing at Alfa Consult, the prime contractor in the World Bank funded US$2.7 million project.
Ronny Svang, President and CEO of Satlynx is keen to stress the partnership aspect of the project: “All three organizations – ourselves, Alfa Consult and Arabsat – have worked closely together on this vital project and will continue to do so to ensure its long term success – a critical infrastructure component for the Iraqi economy. For our part, we will ensure that the network is monitored with meticulous diligence to ensure continuous service availability”.
The network interconnects two Central Bank of Iraq locations in Baghdad with 7 other remote banks in Basrah, Mosul, Anbar, Kirkuk, Najaf, Hilla and Karbala. It forms the backbone over which the Iraqi Payment System (IPS) will run, enabling secure and rapid financial transactions to take place across the country to the benefit of the Iraqi economy.