Inmarsat's 3-in-1 Network Solution Helps Norwegian Offshore Vessel Owner Meet Needs of Charterers and Crew
Norwegian owner and operator of offshore service vessels Golden Energy Offshore is deploying Inmarsat’s Fleet LTE service to meet the growing data requirements of modern offshore operations and support sustainability.
Headquartered in Ålesund, Norway, Golden Energy Offshore owns and operates a fleet of offshore support vessels providing offshore services to the oil, gas, and renewables industries.
The company is a long-term Inmarsat customer and also a longstanding user of the satellite communications specialist’s VSAT services. Typically, offshore vessel operators deploy separate LTE and VSAT solutions, using LTE when in range of onshore networks, rigs, or wind farms and relying on crew to switch to VSAT when beyond the reach of 4G.
Focused on minimizing its environmental footprint, Golden Energy Offshore sees performance analysis as a crucial tool in facilitating its green operations. The company, which is certified to the ISO 50001 energy management standard, requires sufficient bandwidth to collect, analyze and transfer significant volumes of vessel and machinery performance data.
It also needs the capacity to support other data-intensive activities, such as video conferencing, and facilitate remote vessel inspections by class societies as well as remote equipment servicing for customers. Crew welfare is another vital consideration, with a fast and reliable internet connection a necessity for onboard personnel.
However, costs can become difficult to manage when connectivity services are billed separately, while manual switch-overs can compromise signal strength and cause service interruptions. In a highly competitive offshore market in which vessel data consumption doubles every 18 months, operator and customer requirements are evolving – and offshore connectivity solutions must evolve with them.
Continuous connectivity for greener operations
Against this background, Golden Energy Offshore opted to build on its relationship with Inmarsat, implementing the satellite operator’s Fleet LTE solution onboard three of its vessels – Energy Duchess, Energy Empress, Energy Swan and Energy Scout – with all three installations carried out during scheduled port calls.
Launched in 2020, Fleet LTE offers cost-effective access to 4G offshore fibre networks, automatically switching to Inmarsat’s Fleet Xpress Ka-band service when the vessel sails beyond LTE coverage zones, while FleetBroadband (L-band) coverage provides unlimited back-up and 99.9% network availability.
Bringing together three distinct services to produce a solution that is greater than the sums of its parts, Fleet LTE demonstrates the same principle as the forthcoming Inmarsat ORCHESTRA network. According to Inmarsat, ORCHESTRA is a unique, multi-dimensional network that redefines global connectivity by seamlessly combining the capabilities of Inmarsat’s geosynchronous networks with terrestrial 5G, targeted low-Earth orbit satellites, and dynamic mesh networks to deliver unprecedented performance and enable ground-breaking new services.
Meanwhile, by unlocking the power of Fleet Data, Fleet LTE helps shipowners to make informed decisions to optimize efficiency, reduce fuel consumption and minimize emissions, while the Fleet Secure service offers resilient cyber security, Inmarsat says.
According to Per Ivar Fagervoll, Chief Executive Officer, Golden Energy Offshore, Fleet LTE meets all of the company’s requirements. “Fleet LTE was easy to install and ticks all of our boxes,” he says. “By maximizing network capacity and minimizing latency while reducing connectivity costs, the solution has given us a significant competitive edge. Crucially, it supports vessel performance analysis, allowing us to make data-driven decisions to improve efficiency and sustainability across our fleet.”