Knutsen Group Extends VSAT Contract with Marlink
Norwegian tanker specialist Knutsen has extended its contract with Marlink, ensuring that its fleet of 38 vessels and two planned newbuilds will continue to have access to high bandwidth global IP connectivity and voice calling on the Sealink Premium Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT) service.
Marlink’s Sealink VSAT features a Committed Information Rate (CIR), which ensures a minimum level of bandwidth is always accessible while also providing a faster Maximum Information Rate (MIR) when available. Based on its guaranteed level of service, Knutsen Group is exploring new ways to further digitalize its fleet of shuttle tankers, Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) carriers, and product and chemical tankers.
An early adopter of maritime VSAT in 2000, Knutsen has continuously developed its digital processes across its fleet. According to the shipping company, it has seen demand for crew bandwidth rise significantly since 2002 and has continuously challenged Marlink to ensure that its crew are satisfied with the communications facilities on board.
The current on-board configuration using 1-meter Ku-band antennas with back-up on L-band ensures that crew can always access social media and browse the internet, while enabling high bandwidth for vessel and business applications, in addition to fleet management.
“VSAT has been a standard on our fleet for a long time, but we continue to see new applications and demands with the ongoing digitization happening within the maritime markets, which means we need a future-proof solution to enable our own digitization strategies,” said Nils Trones, Knutsen’s communication and navigation manager