Eutelsat’s director of communication system operations, Mark Rawlins, has been elected as the new chairman of the Space Data Association (SDA).

Rawlins succeeds the current SDA Chairman, Ronald Busch, the vice president of Network Engineering for Intelsat.

“The SDA is making a significant contribution to enhancing the safety of satellite operations, and safeguarding the operational environment in space communications,” said Rawlins. ”Our membership has steadily grown to embrace a broad range of members and participants. One of our key challenges going forward will be to enhance the services provided by the SDA to make for a better working environment for all space borne services for all industry sectors with a particular focus on the Radio Frequency environment. This will need to happen in the same spirit in which the SDA was created, to be able share data in a safe way that improves the efficiency and coordination of activities.”

The SDA was set up in 2009 by the international commercial satellite operator community to coordinate activity and safeguard space-based infrastructure in the space environment in which satellites are operating.