Ships will gain faster communications over an expanded coverage area after a large service provider enhanced its technology and added satellite beams.
Satcom Global has migrated the ships using its Aura VSAT network from the iDirect Evolution to the iDirect Velocity platform and higher speeds of Ku-band connectivity services.
This provides higher capacity per vessel, improved satellite network management and additional capacity from the primary network supplier, SES Networks.
Satcom Global chief operating officer Alex Stewart said this migration to a high-capacity and faster platform means the company can offer “futureproof solutions to meet the needs of our growing Aura customer base.”
VSAT will use a mixture of high-throughput spot beams and wide beams of Ku-band for maritime data, media and voice communications and “deliver seamless broadband connectivity that is both flexible and scalable,” said Mr Stewart.
The Velocity platform should ensure vessels using Aura VSAT can maintain a high-quality, uninterrupted IP session while crossing multiple spot beams with more redundancy in connectivity in the network as there will be overlaps in satellite coverage.
Therefore, this upgrade to Velocity improves the coverage and capacity by providing access to more satellite wide beams and hundreds of spot beams on SES’ three recently launched high-throughput satellites. It also opens coverage from the JCSAT-15 satellite in the Indian Ocean region, for connectivity across major shipping lanes.
There is more multi-beam coverage over busy European waters from the Astra 4A satellite. Plus, Aura VSAT has improved coverage across the Americas, focusing on the US west coast, Alaska, Panama and the Caribbean over the SES-1 and SES-10 satellites.
On existing vessels, Aura services were already delivered on board ships through Velocity-ready iDirect X7 modems. There was therefore an ‘over the air’ migration for Aura-connected vessels, which minimised disruption to satellite communications, with no need for further physical hardware upgrades.
Along with the increased SES satellite coverage, Aura VSAT also uses beams form satellite networks operated by Intelsat, Eutelsat and Sky Perfect JSAT. This is backed up by the Iridium Certus L-band pole-to-pole service.
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