Invsat Ltd., the U.K.-based telecommunications systems integrator
, has been awarded a prestigious contract to provide network communications
for the British Antarctic Survey in one of the world’s most challenging environments.
The contract – to install a secure network consisting
of voice, data and Internet communications
– links together four remote scientific bases on and around the continent, two support vessels and the British Antarctic Survey headquarters
in Cambridge where BAS undertakes the U.K.’s scientific research in Antarctica
The VSAT (Very Small Aperture Terminal
) network is connected via the NSS-7 satellite to Invsat’s earth station based at its Aberdeenshire HQ
Stabilized C-Band VSAT systems
are being deployed on the two ice-strengthened Royal Research Ships that support the British Antarctic Survey's operations in the region. The two vessels are the RRS James Clark Ross, which has some of Britain's most advanced facilities for oceanographic research, and the RRS Ernest Shackleton which is primarily a logistics ship, used for the re-supply of the Survey's stations.
As with the vessel-based terminals, the VSAT systems located on each of the four scientific bases at Rothera, Halley, Signy and Bird Island will be radome encased to protect them from some of the harshest weather in the world, where gale force winds and temperatures of minus 40 degrees C are possible.