Apogee Networks Ltd


Established in 2015, Apogee is a New Zealand company organised to uniquely address the rapidly growing requirements for the global distribution of broadband data services and Over-The-Top (OTT) video services to both fixed and mobile devices.  The Company is a “first-mover” in coordinating 600 megahertz of global Ka-band broadcast and over 2 gigahertz of V/Q-band spectrum through the ITU.  Apogee is sponsored with the ITU by the government of New Zealand.


Apogee is exploiting the unique capabilities of highly inclined orbits that essentially positions our satellites directly overhead relative to the end-user terminals of our mobile connected car and fixed consumer and enterprise target market users.


This architecture also minimises atmospheric attenuation effects on our spectrum by enabling the minimum amount of atmosphere for the radio signals to transit, while also overcoming the line-of-sight challenges that negatively impact traditional geosynchronous (GEO) and low earth orbiting (LEO) satellites.


Linked Molniya Orbits

Constant global coverage with 18 satellites

  • 18 satellite locations provide global coverage using six planes at 63.4˚ inclination.
  • There are 9 satellites in each Hemisphere (Northern & Southern), 3 in each of 3 orbital planes.
  • The high look-angle to the satellites minimises atmospheric attenuation and significantly improves the performance and robustness of the network.
  • The initial deployment will be 1 satellite in each of 3 orbits.

    Molniya Orbit Configuration

    • Molniya is Russian for “Quick as lightning”. This is a special class of non-geostationary satellites providing a virtual GEO, eliminating the need for large tracking antennas.
    • At the 63.4˚ inclination, the earth’s oblateness doesn’t affect long-term orbit stability.
    • Each satellite “hangs” over the targeted service area for an 8-hour duty-cycle of its 12-hour orbit period before it whips “quick-as-lightning” through the perigee in the opposite Hemisphere.

    The unique look angle to the satellites enables optimal service to Apogee’s target markets. The Molniya orbits have a long history of use in Russia for video services.

    • V & Q bands are susceptible to significant attenuation from water (and oxygen for ~57 – 64 GHz) in the atmosphere. The enhanced look angle minimizes atmospheric attenuation.
    • The immense bandwidth available in the V and Q bands can be unleashed with minimal degradation of performance. The use of these higher frequencies enables small aperture antennas optimal for connected vehicles and small personal fixed or portable receivers.
    • The Apogee Network is an IP multicast file transfer service using our 600 MHz of Ka-band spectrum which does not require real-time two-way communications and satellite return paths can be asynchronous in the time domain.
    • Digital content is prepositioned in local storage caches at the very edge of the network either for OTT content delivery or for connected car infotainment, software and firmware updates.
    • Apogee can also establish very high bandwidth point-to-point secure connections from anywhere to anywhere with the use of its inter-satellite links.

    Apogee has massive bandwidth available compared to legacy satellite or terrestrial communications systems.

    • This enables highly cost-effective data pricing compared with GEO/MEO/LEO pricing.

    Operational Characteristics

    Distributed Cloud

    Adding a Multicast Extension to the Internet

    IP Multicasting via Satellite

    • The extraordinary efficiency of the universal coverage of satellites to deliver the massive amount of OTT streaming video content is a major global growth market requirement that is growing at over 130% YOY.
    • Our unique architecture enjoys significant benefits with line-of-sight challenges and robust link budgets to enable small ground terminals.

    Integrated Edge Caching

    • The seamless incorporation of edge caching and mobile edge computing technologies into our end-to-end architecture results in a cost per bit that is orders of magnitude less expensive than the competition.

    Innovative Software Defined Network (Using NFV & SDR for Satellite Flexibility)

    • Reconfigurable Spacecraft Payload
    • OFDM Standards Based Operating System

    Reconfigurable Spacecraft Antenna Patterns

    • Multiplexed spot beams enable flexibility and enhanced link budgets.


    OTT Video Content Delivery

    Apogee is designed to be a very high-capacity satellite content delivery network.

    • Apogee enables pre-positioning of OTT content into personal and network edge caches.
      • Personal edge caches: in-car, in-home, portable and mobile devices
      • Network edge caches: at edge broadcast and cellular network towers and sites
    • Home media servers “fed” by Apogee satellites stream OTT video using standard Internet protocols in the Local Area Network, leveraging a vast array of applications and software tools.

    Digital content is prepositioned in local storage caches at the very edge of the network.

    • The Apogee network is the ideal global solution for HEVC high bandwidth 4K & 8K OTT video distribution.
    • The Apogee architecture leverages the dramatic cost reduction of digital storage, allowing for massive, low-cost, content storage at the consumer edge, thus dramatically improving the user experience and making access to content “as quick as you can click” on their local area networks.
    • This eliminates all the infirmities of the unicast Internet video streaming techniques in common usage today.

    Connected Cars and Autonomous Vehicles

    Apogee a single global network simplifying information delivery for vehicle manufacturers.

    • Delivers constant updates of mapping & road information, as well as secure delivery of Software-over-the-Air (SOTA) and Firmware-over-the-Air (FOTA) updates.
    • Apogee’s edge cache and carrousel technology ensure packet perfect downloads into embedded vehicle computing platforms. Updates are confirmed error free in the local cache before release into the on-board computing environment.
    • Apogee’s OTT service can load content into infotainment edge cache devices for passenger use.

    Providing a VPN facility for auto manufacturers to control their own dedicated private network in support of their in-vehicle franchise objective.

    • Auto manufacturers can use dedicated capacity on the Apogee network to enable a unified single vendor provided global private network.
    • The unique near vertical “look angle” of the Apogee system is optimal to serve the requirements of the global connected car market.
    • Higher frequencies enable the use of small aperture antennas that easily fit connected vehicles.

    Secure 2-Way Connectivity

    Apogee provides high-bandwidth secure connections, point-to-point, anywhere on earth.

    • The network enables secure backbone communications that cannot be intercepted from the ground and serving a variety of needs.
      • Multinational organizations.
      • Cellular network operators for cell backhaul and network interconnection.
      • Government and non-strategic military communications.
      • Oil & gas explorers and producers, mining & natural resource operations.
      • Cruise ship & maritime operators.

    Completely secure communications for corporate Virtual Private Networks (VPNs), Content Delivery Networks (CDNs) and CaaS (Capacity as a Service) managed services.

    • Apogee is a very high capacity, highly secure and versatile global VPN hosting network.
    • Universal origination and termination of VPNs is possible with the complete global coverage of the Apogee network enabled by inter-satellite links.


    Incremental Constellation Deployment

    Apogee will undertake incremental capacity deployment in our HEO orbits. The nine “virtual orbital slots” can have one to “N” satellites co-located and “entrained” in close proximity to appear as a single spatial location to ground segment antennas.

    Frequency block A includes all the Ka-band BSS spectrum plus 500 MHz of V/Q-band. The B, C, and D blocks each have 500 MHz of V & Q-band spectrum.

    The basic satellite design will be in the 350kg weight class. Power will be 2 to 4 kW supporting 4 to 8 full-power High Throughput Satellites (HTS) class transponders.

    The system will use a beam forming antenna array to support both individual spot beams and multiplexed spot beams organized to provide wide area coverage.

      Inter-Satellite Links

       Completely Secure End-to-End Connections

      Apogee will use Inter-Satellite Links (ISL) to provide extremely secure point-to-point communications between any location worldwide.

      To be determined during our detailed design studies, the ISL connections will be either optical or 60 GHz RF links that provide seamless connectivity between and among all of the Block A satellites in the Apogee constellation.

      Ground segment connections will be made by the appropriate satellite providing connection to a selected ground segment terminal.


      Vern Fotheringham - Chairman

      Vern has been at the forefront of wireless and broadband digital network technology and service platform development for thirty years. He has pioneered mobile and broadband wireless technologies that now form the core of 4G wireless networks, mobile satellite broadcast networks, and IP voice and data networks.

      John Humphrey - President & CEO

      John has worked in satellite for 30+ years and is an international business development consultant.  He specializes in market validation, product development and commercialisation & sales of products.  He is an advisor to technology innovators in the satellite, telco, undersea cable and IT industries and is based in New Zealand.

      Mark Thompson - Chief Technology Officer

      Mark has a proven track record in new satellite systems design with 35+ years of experience.  He was the Satellite System Designer of the iPSTAR broadband system; the first HTS broadband satellite launched in 2005.  Mark consults to several satellite and launch vehicle manufacturers and is currently designing inter-planetary space probe vehicles.

      Susan Irwin - VP Business Development

      Susan is an internationally known expert in the satellite industry. She founded Irwin Communications in 1985 to provide satellite communications consulting services.  In 2010, Susan joined Euroconsult EC, a Paris-based consulting firm, as president of Euroconsult US, to provide services to the satellite and space industries.

      Dennis Burnett - Director

      Dennis consults on implementation, operation and licensing of communications systems and commercial space operations. He specializes in export licensing and compliance, space law, satellite procurement contracts, launch service agreements, FCC licensing, NOAA licensing, OFAC licensing and DOT licensing.

      Ted Pierson - VP Corporate Development

      Ted has been a successful telecommunications attorney and entrepreneur and a regulatory and business attorney in the telecommunications and broadcasting industries for over 30 years. He has acted as outside general counsel and board member for many telecommunications firms.

      Daniel Barok - VP Regulatory & Government

      Daniel followed a 25-year career in the Israel Defense Forces with roles in the Israeli space industry. He was VP Business Development for SpacePharma and an International Collaborations Adviser at the Israel Space Agency. Previously he was Director of International Marketing and Business Development for ImageSat International and ELBIT Systems.

      Avi Gutgold - VP International

      Avi  has a successful track record of more than 25 years in international sales, business development, marketing, R&D and senior executive positions in the field of Telecom, Satellite Communication, Cyber Security, OTT applications and military projects. Avi has been developing international networks including new territories and new fields of technologies.

      Tarik Chowdury - VP Asia

      Tarik has earned a strong reputation in brand development, new product introduction, and sales and marketing.  He has been actively supporting the planning required to expand the Apogee Networks coverage and content delivery network in Asia. Tarik has been securing regional launch partnerships in Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand and Singapore.

      Contact Apogee Networks

      12 + 10 =


      897 Takatu Road, RD6

      Warkworth, New Zealand 0986

      Call or Email Us

      Vern Fotheringham

      +1 (425) 442-4065


      John Humphrey

      +64 21 555-933