Pablo Martin, customer engineer at Hispasat, does not look at the space industry as merely a high tech field, but as one that is essential to creating a more sustainable world and a more equitable society. Having grown up watching different nations work together to build the International Space Station (ISS), Martin recognizes space as an environment with boundless possibilities.
“From space, there are no frontiers. It is possible to connect people around the world regardless of their position, and it is the only way to gather scientific information which is crucial to solve problems that can’t be solved from Earth,” he says.
As a member of Hispasat’s customer engineering team, Martin is involved with tasks such as network design, pre-sales engineering, R&D and the supervision of satellite procurement cycles. His main responsibility is to design “performing, creative and cost-effective” connectivity solutions.
Martin recalls studying satellite communications while pursuing his Master’s Degree in Telecommunications Engineering when he realized that his personal interests and professional skills converged in this industry.
“I was convinced that I wanted to be working in space projects and designing telecommunications systems, so when I had my first professional experience in Hispasat I knew that I was on the right path,” he explains.
An internship at ESA’s European Space Research and Technology Center (ESTEC) further cemented this confidence. Central to Martin’s passion for the satellite industry is how this technology can change the world.
“We are currently facing complicated problems in today’s society like global warming, international conflicts, or the digital divide to name some examples. These types of problems present, in some cases, one common factor: the presence of inequalities. Satellites, due to their nature, can help to provide a solution thanks to their equalizing effect. They don’t distinguish political or geographical boundaries: they are reliable and they provide an immediate and effective solution,” he says.
A decade from now, Martin envisions a world where telecommunications is so encompassing that people won’t recognize life without it. Interoperability, particularly for satellites, will be a key driver, he says.
“It will be much less common for the end users to talk about LEO, GEO, Ku or HTS. Everything will be part of a unique and integrated network that will be completely transparent to the end user,” he says. That includes satellites being “perfectly integrated” with terrestrial networks too.
Martin mentions affordable rockets and more capable CubeSats as rising technologies that could bring space within reach of more people. He hopes that space-faring nations will continue to pursue audacious projects like the ones that inspired him.
“I would also like to think that there will be more examples of efforts like the development of the ISS, which is a great example of the potential derived from visionary long-term thinking and international collaboration,” he says. VS