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MCP to build world’s biggest offshore 4G network

Diagram of the 4G network Diagram of the 4G network MCP

Telenor-owned Maritime Communications Partner (MCP) has been chosen by Statoil to build and operate what the company claims will be the world’s largest 4G network at sea.

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Located on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS), the network will deliver high-speed connectivity to 34 Statoil rigs, as well as numerous support vessels.

The contract between Statoil and MCP is for an initial period of six years, with an option to extend for another four. The first phase of the project will see 15 rigs, two light well intervention vessels (LWI), two subsea inspection and maintenance vessels (IMR) and 50 supply ships covered by the network.

“Mobile operators and technology have through time, transformed how businesses operate,” says MCP’s CEO Frode Støldal.

“A state of the art high speed 4G network will facilitate even more innovation and efficiency improvement in the oil and gas industry. This contract is a significant milestone in our offshore strategy where we apply an industrial approach, standardised infrastructure and a long-term plan for further expansion.”

MCP already owns 16 base stations on the NCS that will be upgraded to 4G during 2015.The agreement with Statoil covers both existing and new oilfields operated by the Norwegian multinational, and according to MCP, opens up the possibility of expansion into the UK Continental Shelf and other areas of Statoil’s international operation.

“Statoil is the leading operator on the NCS,” says Mr Støldal. 

“The agreement is an important contribution in enabling a significant modernisation of the mobile network and we are looking forward to cooperate with the company.”

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