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Pradman Kaul, president of Hughes Network Systems, was honored in September with the first-ever Lifetime Achievement Award at the COMSYS VSAT2012 Conference in London. The award recognized Kaul’s significant contributions and dedication to the industry over a career spanning four decades.
Kaul joined Digital Communications Corporation (DCC) in the early 70’s, later to become Hughes Network Systems, where he led a start-up band of engineers that in the mid-80’s invented the VSAT (very small aperture terminal) and launched the satellite networking industry. Recognized as ‘Distinguished Alumnus’ of the University of California and George Washington University, Kaul was awarded the third IEEE Third Millennium medal in 2000 and inducted into the National Academy of Engineering in 2004. He was awarded ‘Satellite Executive of the Year 2008’ by Via Satellite magazine, and inducted into the Society of Satellite Professionals International (SSPI). Most recently, Kaul was honored with the Arthur C. Clarke Award for Innovation in 2012.
“Hughes has been at the forefront of the VSAT industry since its inception and Pradman has always been centre stage, providing the leadership, vision and support that made Hughes’ success possible,” said COMSYS senior consultant, Simon Bull. “I was in awe of him in 1985 and I still am today. At COMSYS we are pleased to recognise and thank Pradman for the contribution he has made to our industry over more than 30 years.”
On receiving the award, Kaul said, “This comes as a complete surprise. After all these years I am still passionate about the satellite market. It is a privilege to be part of an industry which continues to see impressive technology developments such as the latest expansion of Ka-band. Satellite is now firmly part of the global communications landscape, and the future of our industry looks more exciting than ever.”
Hughes also recently earned a spot on the InformationWeek 500, an annual listing of the most innovative users of business technology in the U.S., and a 2012 Unified Communications TMC Labs Innovation Award for Hughes Enterprise VoIP. In addition, Hughes Communications India, Ltd. won the award for the “Best Innovative Product: Broadband” at the Economic Times Telecom Awards 2012, as well as being ranked as the leader in the Indian VSAT industry by Voice and Data Magazine, with a reported 52 percent market share in FY12.
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