Pacific Basin Shipping is using VSAT connectivity to communicate key issues to seafarers working across its bulk carrier fleet during the global coronavirus pandemic
The Hong Kong-headquartered shipowner is using KVH Industries VSAT communications network for crew welfare and operational connectivity with ship-to-shore and shore-to-ship communications over wide-beam and high-throughput satellites (HTS) using Ku-band.
Pacific Basin uses KVH’s mini-VSAT Broadband HTS satellite network and antenna technology, and KVH’s YourLink service to transmit company messages and video to seafarers aboard its 116 Handysize and Supramax bulk carriers using multicast technology.
Pacific Basin has already transmitted two time-sensitive videos, including one on the crucial topic of crew changes during these tough times. In the video, Pacific Basin’s fleet director Jay K Pillai discusses the efforts being made to enable seafarers to disembark their vessels for crew changes, despite worldwide port call restrictions due to Covid-19.
He addressed the issue of seafarers being unable to leave their vessels. This is widespread throughout the maritime industry, with some experts calling it the most serious situation the industry has faced in decades.
“For Pacific Basin, the ability to send a video quickly to all our ships and seafarers simultaneously is an effective and appealing way for our company to get an important and heartfelt message out directly to our colleagues at sea,” said Mr Pillai.
In reaction to the global crew change crisis and coronavirus pandemic, KVH began offering a 50% discount on data plan upgrades in April. This discount will continue through to the end of December, confirmed KVH executive vice president for mobile connectivity Mark Woodhead.
“We have seen hundreds of vessels opt for more bandwidth during the pandemic because communication is such a critical factor at this challenging time,” Mr Woodhead said.
KVH provides ship communications using its global mini-VSAT Broadband network, TracPhone antenna and other VSAT hardware and AgilePlans connectivity. It also provides news, sports, and entertainment content by multicasting media to ships. This is how it sends YourLink messages to ship fleets.
Strategies for dealing with the global coronavirus pandemic will be discussed during Riviera Maritime Media’s series of webinar weeks in September and Q4 2020. Use this link for more details and to register for these webinars