Student profile
The Rik Medlik building

Prashant Butani

“I was impressed by Surrey’s reputation and its satellite engineering infrastructure.”


Satellite Communications Engineering MSc

"I wanted to study Satellite Communications Engineering at Surrey because I was impressed by its reputation and satellite engineering infrastructure - Surrey Space Centre and Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd - on campus. If you’re studying anything related to space or satellite, Surrey has to be your first preference. It’s undoubtedly the best technical course on the subject!I also saw coming here as my chance to improve English as a working language even further.

My strongest memory is of taking long walks around the beautiful football field and cathedral on the hill, Guildford high street and spending afternoons on the mound near the library. I also loved the fact that Surrey was building satellites on campus that would be eventually sent into Space!

I received an offer of employment just three months into my MSc course to work on satellite technologies, just like that, which I wasn’t expecting. Surrey opened up the world for me and it was great being here.

If there is one thing I took away from Surrey, it was that the world is your oyster. I had an offer from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) three months into the course, to work on a project with their AeroAstro department - just like that! It didn’t work out because of visa reasons but just the fact that Surrey opened up the world for me is an influence like no other.

I am now Senior Analyst at Northern Sky Research, and I still continue to work with satellite communications markets. It is the blurred line between science fiction and fact that keeps me going in this field. Satellites were a concept introduced in 1945 by Dr Arthur C Clarke yet they have taken off so quickly. Today, you can connect to almost any device, whether you’re in the desert or on top of a mountain. I love being a part of this industry and Surrey gave me the ultimate kick-start. The fact that my line of work blurs the line between science fiction and scientific fact is what keeps me going. Satellites were a concept only introduced in 1945 by Dr Arthur C Clarke in an article in Wireless World. Today, whether you are at the poles, in the desert or atop a mountain, you have connectivity, entertainment and positioning … often via satellite alone. I love it!

Some say “the sky is the limit”. In this profession, the most important component is actually a fair way beyond the skies. That and quite a bit of it is, in fact, “rocket science”!"

Discover more about our engineering programmes, including our MSc Satellite Communications Engineering