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Sea Tel XX12 now ROAM compatible

Comtech EF Data Corporation has announced that it has completed interoperability testing with a selection of Cobham maritime VSAT stabilised antenna systems and the ROSS Open Antenna Management (ROAM) protocol.

The interoperability enables Cobham’s Sea Tel XX12 series equipped with IMA electronics, including the 4012GX, 4009 MK3, 5012 and 6012, to globally roam across multiple satellite beams using the protocol, maintaining connectivity while moving through different satellite footprints.

This product range can be added to the Sea Tel USAT series, Sea Tel 3011, Sea Tel XX06, Sea Tel XX09, Sea Tel XX10, Sea Tel XX07 and Sea Tel XX97 antenna systems utilising a DAC-2202 antenna controller first implemented in November 2012, all providing systems capable of interoperability with the ROAM protocol.

Comtech EF Data says that the ROAM protocol offers a common management interface for its Roaming Oceanic Satellite Server (ROSS) and third-party Antenna Control Units (ACUs) by providing a generic set of commands, information, interfaces and status queries.

ROSS is a server that works in conjunction with Comtech EF Data's Vipersat Management System to facilitate on-the-move satellite communications for oceanic vessels. ROSS enables remote modems to interface with stabilised, auto-tracking antennas, with vVessel position data, satellite signal and management status constantly monitored to determine when satellite handoff is necessary.

“The addition of ROAM and seamless satellite switching to our Sea Tel XX12 series ensures that users experience high service availability on a global basis,” said Casper Jensen, vice president maritime for Cobham SATCOM.

“Combined with IMA, which features an extended user interface, simple software updating, new remote management capabilities and enhanced network integration, the Sea Tel XX12 series provides significant installation, servicing and operational efficiencies for global users.”

In related news, Cobham has also unveiled its new SAILOR FleetBroadband Push-to-Talk (SAILOR PTT) system, which will provide over-the-horizon communication via GSM and L-band satcoms.

Scheduled to launch in the fourth quarter of this year, SAILOR PTT integrates Inmarsat’s L-band service with GSM services to enable long-range, secure, multi-user communication. Cobham expects the solution to be popular within the work boat, OSV and fishing fleets.

SAILOR PTT will operate similar to VHF but, unlike radio which is an open broadcasting network, it will link vessels together in a private network. Cobham says that IP-based digital voice will improve quality over analogue VHF voice, with no radio interference or background noise, and without the need for VHF infrastructure.

Additionally, all connectivity aspects of the SAILOR FleetBroadband terminal that powers PTT are available to provide connectivity and voice for crew welfare and operations.

SAILOR PTT is a hybrid solution, with automatic least-cost routing over FleetBroadband and 2G/3G/LTE networks. The system will use GSM wherever possible and switch to FleetBroadband when required. A voice transfer protocol is used to minimise FBB bandwidth usage.

“SAILOR PTT has huge potential to enhance communications between vessels in a fleet, especially those involved in hazardous or complex operations,” said Mr Jensen.

“Our PTT technology is already deployed on land so we are keen to offer it to our maritime customer base. The advantages of PTT over traditional VHF group communication are clear; it really is the easiest, most secure way to broadcast messages to many people at once.”

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Digital Ship magazine provides the latest information about maritime satellite communications technology, software systems, navigation technology, computer networks, data management and TMSA. It is published ten times a year.


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