While the true uptake of broadband across the maritime sector has been slow to develop, a number of market conditions are conspiring to drive the service mainstream. Intelsat’s Kurt Riegelman discusses the matter with Maritime Reporter & Engineering News.
While the advent of full broadband in the maritime sector is the exception rather than the norm, the tides are changing as companies increasingly deploy fast, modern ‘land-like’ comms in an effort to achieve everything from attracting and retaining crew, to streamlining business operations at sea and enhancing safety.
“Shipping companies are increasingly relying on true broadband access to improve day-to-day operations and profitability,” said Kurt Riegelman, Sr. Vice President, Sales & Marketing, Intelsat. “Broadband connectivity allows ship managers to quickly request and receive support from onshore staff for important business and operational tasks as well as offer value-added services, such as environmental tracking and cargo status to customers. Improved connectivity also enhances crew safety and wellness.”
The evolution of maritime communication networks at sea is in many ways analogous to the maturity of software solutions at sea: initially a piecemeal approach to address emerging needs rather than a holistic ‘big picture’ approach, premised partly by the fact that technology and capability has emerged rapidly.
“Network providers also face unpredictable market demand, as commercial maritime trading patterns continually shift,” said Riegelman. “Communications providers need to ensure they have the right capacity to serve the future demand distribution across the existing network, especially in high traffic areas.”
Just as land-based network operators face tough decisions premised on many offerings purporting to provide similar capability, at-sea communication network managers face similarly difficult decisions, seeking to maximize hardware investment for as long as possible while trying to evaluate the needs of today and in the future.
The Intelsat Maritime Solutions
“Maritime customers have come to rely increasingly on Intelsat’s C- and Ku-band satellite services to provide connectivity for the shipping, offshore and cruise sectors worldwide,” said Riegelman. “Intelsat’s Global Broadband Mobility Network, the world’s only global Ku-band mobility offering, was built specifically to deliver broadband infrastructure to the aeronautical and maritime sectors. The network of 13 customized beams on 10 satellites is fully integrated with Intelsat’s existing satellite fleet and the IntelsatOne terrestrial infrastructure. This global hybrid network provides end users with always-on, true broadband access with data rates up to 50 Mbps.”
According to Riegelman, Intelsat enables network operators to adjust their services to provide customers bandwidth when and where it is needed. Bandwidth portability allows network operators to shift capacity in response to customer needs, while operator roaming allows end users to transfer onto Intelsat’s network in real time. Its services will be further enhanced by launch of the Intelsat EpicNG platform, which is designed to deliver high performance and high throughput with an open architecture.
“EpicNG is fully integrated with the existing Intelsat fleet, supporting global coverage from the start of its deployment,” said Riegelman.
The first of six EpicNG satellites, Intelsat 29e, is scheduled for launch in Q1 2016, providing services over the Americas and the North Atlantic. Intelsat 33e, which will bring capacity to Africa, Asia and Europe, is scheduled to be launched in the second half of 2016. Finally, four additional EpicNG satellites are designed to provide resilience and connectivity for the busiest global routes.
Technical highlights of the EpicNG system are spot beams and frequency reuse technologies, which help in concentrating the power of the individual transponders over a smaller area, allowing for higher modulation schemes that dramatically increase the number of bits delivered per MHz, ultimately designed to result in lower cost per bit for the service provider.
The Intelsat EpicNG platform is designed to enable throughput in the range of 25-60 Gbps per satellite, and for the maritime sector, each EpicNG spot beam will be designed to deliver total throughput of 290 Mbps to vessels.
“Leading maritime service providers, including Harris CapRock, MTN and Airbus Defence and Space, have already committed to Intelsat EpicNG,” said Riegelman.
(As published in the May 2015 edition of Maritime Reporter & Engineering News - http://magazines.marinelink.com/Magazines/MaritimeReporter)
At London International Shipping Week held in September, KVH Industries, Inc. introduced the second generation of its mini-VSAT Broadband solution for the maritime market, providing a combination of data delivered at high speeds and at low price points, with vessel operational and crew entertainment/informati
global high-speed Internet, television, and voice services via satellite to mobile users at sea and on land. These solutions include the mini-VSAT Broadband network, TracPhone satellite communications antenna systems, and TracVision satellite television antenna systems. KVH is based in Middletown, RI
such as KVH are growing their business and product portfolios at an equally rapid clip. “The big driver in the business today is the capability of broadband,” said Jim Dodez, SVP Marketing and Strategic Planning, KVH Industries, Inc. “So it’s not one thing, it’s not entertainment alone, for example. It’s
Hull Electronics Company, San Diego, Calif., recently announced their new family of linear amplifiers and matching power supplies. These broadband solid-state amplifiers are offered in three configurations: 1,000 watts PEP and CW; 1,000 watts PEP, 500 watts CW; 500 watts PRP and CW. The
and shore. The marketplace says it can be done. Maritime Reporter & Engineering News, with the help of industry insiders, explains how. Maritime Broadband’s Triple Play Although Maritime Broadband isn’t the biggest or best known maritime communications provider, the engineering company’s VSAT communication
, maritime service providers are seeing a transformation in the type and quantity of applications that need to be supported at sea. The advent of VSAT broadband services is driving a shift away from traditional, low-level L-band connections that ship operators have relied upon for decades. VSAT services are
to be consumed in order to be compliant with various maritime regulations, both current and future. For the time being, and while the cost of SATCOM and broadband remains higher than cellular plans, the difference between the two has closed measurably in the last five years. SATCOM for Inland Business SATCOM
major improvements in the quality of subsurface mapping of geological formations containing complex salt bodies have taken place with the introduction of broadband seismic survey technology. Since the discovery of the Lula oil field in 2006, CGG’s BroadSeis has been involved in the most important pre-salt discoveries
business. Connnexion by Boeing, a business unit of The Boeing Company, announced an expansion of its service offering to include high speed satellite broadband capability for the maritime industry. "We're actively engaged in discussions with several of the leading maritime . operators, as well as potential
, are utilized by scientists, researchers and engineers at institutions worldwide. A product of thousands of engineering man-hours, the AD2CP is Nortek’s broadband Doppler signal processing platform (US Patent 7,911,880) and includes a series of innovative elements, which will open doors to new applications
environment. And, that involves plenty. Talking about Harvey Gulf’s business model, Steve Griffin, Sales Manager of the KVH Commercial Maritime, Mobile Broadband Group told MarineNews in March, “They are a visionary company. They are building and adapting the capabilities of their supply boats. As they are
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to be piloted from shore, via 4G sors within SPRINT-Nav as well as the vehicle (AUV/UUV) naviga-vehicle (AUV/UUV) naviga- ansmitted from a mobile broadband transmitted from a use of high-speci? cation Ring Laser tion.”use of high-speci? cation Ring Laser tion.” Gyros are behind the high performance
be applied here including small- AUV on the back of our 140 ft. survey er, fast support vessels and unlimited vessel is certainly possible (lets carry broadband VSAT solutions which may four). We have a fantastic launch and re- make it work well. covery stinger to do that. The reality is, recovering costs
. This is accompanied by a spec- holes is designed to allow ships to operate with a more the same design, one with 33 strategically-introduced trum of broadband (high) frequency noise due to cavi- silent propeller with a minimum of compromise on its holes in each blade, another with 17 holes. tation and
pulling hydro power pi- lot lines and dropping objects for electric grid operators as well as surveys for the national railroad. Kongsberg Maritime Broadband Radio, a satellite-indepen- MODERN CLASS FOR dent system, is at least aboard the Indago drones, one of two types tested, since a SMARTER OPERATIONS dea
on roads, bridg- The recent U.S. Department of Trans- service will support a more sustainable raise his hand and ask why. This was re- es, water, broadband and power grids. portation’s Maritime Administration and marketable transportation option, portedly not well received. How they will pay for that
optional tube cutting. The TracPhone V11-HTS is de- UPC 450 Ship Pro? ler also has a small signed for KVH’s mini-VSAT machine footprint. The HGG UPC Broadband HTS network, 450 Ship Pro? ler offers full process which utilizes Intelsat’s Flex cutting integration through the HGG ProCAM Software Suite
dropped tation vessels. Shipping in the EMEA norm for shipping ? eets. However, the have seen and are still watching what’s dramatically. Nowadays, broadband region, however, is based on large ? eets industry now ? nds itself at a crossroads happening on land – things like satel- technologies, such
, controlled remotely from our onshore mission support center three-week and three-month contracts are common. We have with communications via the 4G broadband network, using a also spent a lot of time improving our installation and reactiva- self-deployed surface buoy. We’re very proud of this achieve- tion
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, including the HUGIN AUV System. In addition to the the autonomy controller solution, SEA- KIT will be equipped with Kongsberg Maritime’s Maritime Broadband Radio (MBR) for high bandwidth direct communication to shore, SeaPath 135 with an MRU5+ for heading, attitude and positioning and the AIS300 Automatic
Subsea’s Star- tracking and data modems are built ing sensors such as forward looking so- Fish Sidescan Sonars are shallow water, around a robust broadband spread spec- nar, DVL and GPS navigation suitable high spec
front.” next-generation, advanced maritime found that 92% of seafarers reported sus crew amenities, providing ? exibil- According to Mark Woodhead, broadband network, joined by service that internet access strongly in? uences ity and choice. KVH’s SVP Europe, there is one more partner, Intelsat. their
with one single ping TracPhone V11-IP and the TracPhone V7-HTS are designed and retrieve an underwater image up to 1000 meters for KVH’s mini-VSAT Broadband connectivity service. The ahead. This user-friendly system has no moving parts and vessels are also receiving news and entertainment content via
about the company safety The end of L-Band? data to ? ow, though it does need more ing VSAT technology and quickly ? nd- record, but whether there is broadband Perhaps not quite yet. There will be attention to bandwidth management and ing their systems overloaded and their access onboard ship. a need
enable route the IntelsatOne Flex for Maritime plat- tematic approach ensures optimal pro- optimization, fuel management and new form. KVH’s maritime broadband net- tection, making our end-to-end network services, the demand for bandwidth has work incorporates Intelsat EpicNG sat- infrastructure more secure
other type un- manned workboats requiring a communications solutions The un-crewed RALamander ? reboat will offer in-close based on Kongsberg's Marine Broadband Radio (MBR) ? re? ghting and ‘eye in the ? re’ capability that keeps ma- system. The fruit of those labors is the RALamander. rine ? re? ghting
survey projects. Hydrographic Of? ce (UKHO) as the The company has entered into a contract single framework supplier until August for a two-month broadband 3D marine 2020 for survey equipment and associ- seismic acquisition project in Australia ated engineering support to enable Brit- that will commence
data, key What are the company’s prime objectives in the coming features include: 12 to 24 months? • Operation: Full over the horizon using satellite broadband We are currently focused on delivering service in Europe • Range: 18 days / 1,512nm endurance and expanding into other markets such as Australia
ask its crewing agent is not about the of maritime communications fallen consistently for a decade, company safety record, but whether there is broadband access but also that spending on better connectivity can drive value onboard ship. into their operations. To do this takes commitment to under-
required company’s Global Xpress and L-band Lloyd’s Register said it had learnt how of physical and cyber assets. Pearce to achieve redundancy. Broadband con- constellations, the world’s ? rst hybrid to approve a system and its integration said, however, that the era of the con- nectivity supports
be ultra-speed, highly reliable satellite-enabled connectivity. ployed over one million staff, many of whom will be away from Investing in cutting-edge broadband services will enable the home for weeks at a time. In the past, without internet access cruise ship industry to free itself from its old shackles
year for year, Dream Cruises announced that it would be providing its new cruise ships, with just about ev- guests with ultra-fast, on-board broadband services, powered 2018 ery major cruise line due to launch a by SES Networks. SES Networks’ high-performance and re- new ship during the course
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