Rhodes Communications
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Our Clients

We serve a diverse list of clients in a range of vertical markets worldwide.

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Our Clients

We serve a diverse list of clients in a range of vertical markets worldwide..

Our Current Client List:

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(Virginia Beach, VA)

Stabilization & Trim Systems

Humphree equipment is designed and manufactured to deliver world-class quality and reliability. Customer support and spare parts are available wherever and whenever needed, through our Head Office in Sweden or via our expanding network of local representatives around the world.

Upwing Energy, Inc.

(Cerritos, CA)

Artificial Lift Technology

Upwing Energy, Inc. provides the only artificial lift technology that increases the production and recoverable reserves of natural gas from conventional and unconventional wells by inputting energy into the gas stream.

EVERYWHERE Communications, Inc.

(Annapolis, MD)

Satellite Communications

EVERYWHERE Communications provides dual-mode cellular and satellite communications, powered by patented technology deployed in mission-critical environments. In or out of cellular coverage, we have you connected globally. EVERYWHERE.


(Miami, FL)

AST&Science was founded by satellite-industry pioneer, entrepreneur and inventor Abel Avellan, a 25-year veteran in the global satellite communications sector. He was the founder and CEO of EMC until it was sold to Global Eagle for $550 million in 2016. Avellan was named Satellite Teleport Executive of the Year in 2017 and was the recipient of the Satellite Transaction of the Year award by Euroconsult in 2015. Avellan is also co-inventor of 18 U.S. patented technologies.

ThinKom Solutions, Inc.

(Hawthorne, CA)

Broadband antenna

ThinKom Solutions, Inc. is a leading provider of innovative highly affordable compact broadband antenna and products for aeronautical, on-the-move (OTM) and man-portable applications. With more than 640 aeronautical satcom antennas currently deployed, ThinKom offers a range of reliable, proven technology solutions for the consumer, enterprise, first responder, civil, military and intelligence communities.

Western Branch Diesel

(Portsmouth, VA)

Western Branch Diesel is a family-owned distributor providing sales and service of diesel engines and transmissions for marine and industrial markets. Based in Portsmouth, Virginia, the company has 11 branch offices covering Virginia, West Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky and North Carolina. The company’s 280 employees include over 150 technicians.


(Starnberg, Germany)

Marine electric drives

Torqeedo is a pioneer in the development and commercialization of electric and hybrid marine propulsion technology. Founded in 2005, Torqeedo is headquartered in Starnberg, Germany and sells its award-winning products in over 50 countries around the world.

Elcome International


Marine systems integrator and ship service

Founded in 1969, Elcome has been serving the marine industry as an innovative, reliable and high quality system integrator, distributor, installer and after-sales service agent of marine equipment, technologies and solutions.


(Cerritos, CA)

Permanent magnet power generation, waste heat recovery

Calnetix helps OEMs to meet industry demand for reliable, clean energy by providing our Thermapower® and Hydrocurrent™ ORC systems to recover and utilize waste heat, and our VDC® and REGEN™ flywheel systems to store and recycle energy.

Danelec Marine


Bridge electronics for maritime industry

Danelec Marine is a leading manufacturer of VDRs (Voyage Data Recorders) with more than 6,000 installations worldwide and is strongly positioned in ECDIS (Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems). 

Clients’ Press Releases

Prestigious Fishing Resort Tropic Star Lodge Repowers Fleet of Classic Bertrams with Volvo Penta

November 20, 2018

(CHESAPEAKE, Va.) – Nov. 20, 2018 – Tropic Star Lodge, one of the world’s premier sport fishing destinations, is upgrading its fleet of 13 popular 1970s-vintage Bertram 31’s with modern, fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly Volvo Penta engines.

Built in 1963 and located in Piñas Bay, Panama, the resort is a globally renowned retreat for those looking to catch billfish, especially black marlin, blue marlin and sailfish.

The Tropic Star team began planning for modernizing the boats’ aging propulsion plants several years ago. After a comprehensive evaluation, they decided on twin Volvo Penta four-liter inboard diesels with ZF transmissions.

“We are very pleased with the result of our decision,” said Ursula Marais, operations director and CEO of Tropic Star. “Volvo Penta demonstrated a great deal of flexibility and a commendable commitment to customer service in meeting our requests.”

The first installation was completed last year, and the next two will be completed in 2018. The remaining retrofits will be completed on a phased schedule so as to minimize disruption to fishing operations.

“This successful fleet repower project for Tropic Star in one of the least accessible locations in the Americas is a great testimony to the reliability and efficiency of our D4 engine platform, along with the creativity of our application engineering team and our dedicated service dealer in Panama,” said Dave Brown, director of marine commercial of Volvo Penta of the Americas.

Volvo Penta applications engineer Guilherme Tait explained that Tropic Star had very specific criteria for the replacement engines, based on their unique situation. The most important consideration was reliability, since the remote Pacific location of the Tropic Star facility is reachable only by boat or charter plane and requires the staff to be self-sufficient.

All maintenance, service and repairs are performed onsite in the resort’s boatyard. The location also dictates the usage patterns for the boats. The distance to the fishing grounds is minimal, and the boats spend the great majority of their time trolling at slow speeds up to 12-13 hours per day. Since the engine compartment on the Bertram 31 is constricted, space was also an issue. As a final consideration, the environmentally conscious owners wanted to meet EPA Tier 3 emission levels.

Because the customer was looking for a top speed of 24 knots, it became evident that the four-liter engine was a perfect choice and easily fit into the restricted engine space, according to Tait. Volvo Penta also devised a custom trolling mode that permits operation at low RPMs and added an extra alternator pulley on the engine to drive an air conditioning compressor.

The installations were performed in the Tropic Star boatyard with technical support and advice from the Volvo Penta application engineering team and assistance from CDM, the Volvo Penta dealer in Panama.

The first boat now has over 1,600 hours on the new engine. According to Tait, fuel usage is averaging 39 gallons per each 11-hour working day, delivering about 45 percent in fuel savings.

“At Volvo Penta, customer service is at our core,” said Roberto Camacho, distribution development account manager at Volvo Penta of the Americas. “We have put a lot of effort into the improvement of our dealer network in this region, and we are pleased that Tropic Star is satisfied with their overall experience.”

The Volvo Penta-powered boat is in high demand among resort guests who appreciate the low noise levels and no exhaust smells on deck. It’s also the only air conditioned boat in the fleet. The captain said he can now easily talk with the crew from the flybridge – something that was impossible before.

Learn more about the Tropic Star Lodge at https://www.tropicstar.com/en/.

For high-resolution images, visit: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/rmj4mhlwklyla3j/AABH5V_l4e6L6g62bGm1LZbBa?dl=0 

About Volvo Penta 

Volvo Penta, with approximately 3,500 dealers in over 130 countries, is a world-leading and global manufacturer of engines and complete power systems for leisure boats, commercial vessels and industrial applications. Product offerings encompass diesel and gasoline engines with power outputs of between 10 and 1,000 hp. Volvo Penta is part of the Volvo Group, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of heavy trucks, buses and construction equipment.

Connect with Volvo Penta of the Americas on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for the latest company news and insights.

For further information, please contact: 

Christine Carlson
Volvo Penta of the Americas
Phone: +1 (757) 382 4084
E-mail: christine.carlson@volvo.com

Jim Rhodes
Rhodes Communications, Inc.
Phone: +1 (757) 451 0602
E-mail: jrhodes@rhodescomm.com





AST&Science to Open Additional Space Manufacturing Facility and Relocate Corporate Headquarters to Midland, Texas

November 15, 2018

Space Technology Company to Set Up High-Volume Production of Ultra-Powerful LEO Satellite Platforms at Midland Space Port Business Park

MIAMI – Nov. 15, 2018 – AST&Science, after an intensive competitive process, today announced the selection of Midland, Texas, as the location for its new high-volume North American satellite manufacturing plant and corporate headquarters.

The space technology company’s new 85,000 sq. ft. facility is located within the Space Port Business Park located at the Midland International Air and Space Port, the first commercial airport to obtain a Space Port License from the Federal Aviation Administration. It will augment the current R&D, engineering and manufacturing capabilities in Maryland and Europe operated by AST&Science and its subsidiary AST&Defense.

The new plant will be one of the largest “New Space” manufacturing facilities in the United States and will create more than 160 space manufacturing jobs in Midland, according to AST&Science chairman and CEO Abel Avellan, who said the company expects to invest over $30 million in the facility over the next several years and to achieve annual production capacity of 100,000 space modules, which are called Microns.

The new AST&Science plant will design, build, integrate, manage and launch satellite platforms into low-Earth orbits (LEO) in a fully integrated aeronautical and space operation. Avellan noted that the collocation of the high-volume manufacturing and direct airside access for the horizontal launch capability, using carrier aircraft at the Midland Space Port, will be an important element in the company’s planned rapid LEO satellite deployments.

The company’s patented modular construction process will dramatically reduce the cost and weight of the LEO satellites, while providing unprecedented levels of power and performance.

“Our revolutionary technology will change the way satellites are manufactured, launched and used in space and on Earth. From Midland, we will scale up quickly to produce high quantities of low-cost ultra-powerful LEO satellite platforms,” said Avellan. “This will open up an astonishing range of commercial and defense applications not previously possible with traditional satellite manufacturing techniques.”

Construction of the facility is now complete, thanks to the partnership with the Midland Development Corporation (MDC), and initial production is scheduled to commence early next year. The first satellites will be launched for orbital tests in 2019.

“We are delighted to be welcomed by the City of Midland and the grand state of Texas, where big things happen,” commented Adriana Cisneros, a board member and chief strategy officer of AST&Science, as well as CEO of Cisneros.

Brent Hilliard, chairman of MDC, said: “We’re thrilled to announce this partnership with AST&Science. Midland gets 160 jobs in a diversified, high-tech industry, and can offer AST&Science a location with access to an airport and licensed space port. The MDC provided a scalable manufacturing location that was a key factor in bringing this new industry to Midland. It’s a symbiotic collaboration that makes perfect sense.”

Earlier this year, AST&Science acquired a controlling interest in NanoAvionics, a European manufacturer and systems integrator of small lightweight satellites, and forged a partnership with Cisneros, the original founders of DIRECTV in Latin America and a large media player based in Miami, Florida.

About AST&Science

AST&Science was founded by satellite-industry pioneer, entrepreneur and inventor Abel Avellan, a 25-year veteran in the global satellite communications sector. He was the founder and CEO of EMC until its sale for $550 million in 2016. Avellan is also co-inventor of 18 U.S. patented technologies. For more information, visit www.ast-science.com.

About Midland Development Corporation

The Midland Development Corporation (MDC) promotes the City of Midland and incentivizes qualified employers who create and retain a diversified job market in the greater Midland, Texas, region. MDC promotes business expansion and job creation through an established business climate and a strong community. MDC is an effective steward of sales tax revenue to efficiently grow Midland’s economic stability and quality of life.

A high-res image may be downloaded at: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/9hpra0uyyon0b2a/AADmwfYvQZH9uupu2VVZyUjAa?dl=0

Photo caption: New AST&Science manufacturing plant and headquarters, Midland Space Park, Texas.


Press contacts:

Jim Rhodes                                                                        Sara Harris

Rhodes Communications, Inc.                           Midland Development Corporation

+1 305 913 7106                                                               +1 806 786 1208

jrhodes@rhodescomm.com                                 sharris@midlandtxed.com