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Comcast Media Center Fuels Rocket Launches

Comcast Media Center, the cable operator's media services unit, struck a deal with United Launch Alliance to distribute live and archived coverage of its rocket launches across multiple platforms.

Centennial, Colo.-based United Launch Alliance designs, builds and launches satellites for the U.S. government, including the Department of Defense, NASA and the National Reconnaissance Office, as well as commercial customers.

Under the deal, live and archived webcasts of ULA launches and related events are delivered via the CMC in broadcast-quality IP video formats for multiplatform content distribution. CMC delivers the feeds via terrestrial fiber for closed-circuit viewing at ULA's 11 locations across the U.S., including control rooms at Cape Canaveral and Vandenberg AFB; ULA's production, maintenance and storage facilities in Decatur, Ala., San Diego, Denver and Harlington, Texas; and its offices in Washington, D.C. and Denver.

CMC also supports thousands of concurrent views by the general public of live simulcasts on ULA's website, including in Flash, HTTP Live Streaming and other media formats. ULA events are also captured and hosted by the CMC for subsequent on-demand viewing.

"We are grateful for the opportunity to apply our wide spectrum of media asset management solutions to support ULA's educational mission," CMC vice president and general manager of content services Richard Buchanan said in a statement. CMC is "very focused on providing a quality viewing experience, which really comes through with our delivery of the dramatic footage of these rocket launches, which literally take viewers along for the ride."

CMC's ingest facility -- also located in Centennial -- handles more than 20,000 live video feeds each year, including live sports, news and entertainment events.