Space Products & Innovation
The dominant space technology that supports energy and Earth resources is remote sensing. Remote sensing images are not limited to the wavelengths of light that can be seen by the human eye. Earth sensing satellites record primarily microwave, infrared, and visible light wavelengths.
In space, accommodations are among the long-term goals (20 to 30 years) of several privately funded space companies. SpaceX’s founder Elon Musk has often stated his personal goal, and one of the goals of his company, is to help humanity become a “spacefaring civilization.”
Satellites will continue to provide niche services and connectivity for the hospitality industry. In areas without terrestrial cable, television is not economical, and hotels will continue to rely on direct-to-home services to provide guests with premium content.
Satellite-enabled capabilities are sometimes used to enhance guest services. In 2005, Rosewood Hotels & Resorts started offering its guests an alternative to paper maps when looking for directions.
Hotels in remote tourist locations use very small aperture terminals (VSATs) to keep track of bookings and current capacity. In 1999, Best Western had 560 sites connected by a VSAT network, while, more recently, Six Continents Hotels, Inc., contracted Gilat to provide a satellite network to more than 2,500 locations in the United States and Canada.
“Since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, the U.S. government has become the satellite industry’s single largest customer and the Defense Department has been the biggest driver behind the new wave of demand,” said Don Ritter, vice president of government services at PanAmSat G2 Satellite Solutions.