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Northern Sea Route given connectivity boost

Passage through Northern shipping routes and Arctic waters has received a boost following the doubling of the connectivity speed of the Iridium CertusTM network, says maritime communications specialist IEC Telecom.

As the shortest sea route between Europe and the Asia-Pacific region, the Northern Sea Route holds immense potential to compete with conventional trade lines. There has been a significant increase in maritime traffic across the main transport corridors in the Arctic, Northern Sea Route in the Russian Federation, the Northwest Passage in Canada as well as the Arctic Bridge from Canada to Europe. In the Canadian Arctic, traffic has tripled between 1990 and 2015. Moreover, cargo volume in the Northern Sea Route has increased by 40 per cent between 2016 and 2017.

Iridium CertusTM 700 service is commercially available at speeds of 700 kbps – the fastest L-band speed in the industry. This network with pole-to-pole coverage serves to further unlock new opportunities for the fleets operating in the North. Fishing fleets, commercial ships, and other vessels transiting Arctic waters can benefit from enhanced connectivity in these remote and potentially hazardous waters.

IEC Telecom reports that many of its clients operating in the Northern Sea region have recently switched to the Iridium Certus service. “Vessels operating in this region require robust solutions that can be relied upon under harsh weather conditions. Iridium Certus is the only global network able to meet these requirements,” said Alf Stian Mauritz, managing director, IEC Telecom Norway. “With this new speed, Northern operators can share greater levels of data with their shore offices, avail VOIP calls, and access faster email exchange.”

Upgrading to Iridium CertusTM 700 requires no new hardware for existing users. “As an Iridium master distributor, not only does IEC Telecom offer its customers the expertise required to transition to this service, we also provide a completely compatible network management solution, OneGate. With our technical support services, customers get better visibility over their remote satellite assets. Such solutions can help operators in the Northern region enhance their crew welfare options, access reliable cybersecurity and filtration, and even customise cloud-based features.”