Iridium Completes OpenPort Field Testing
[Satellite Today 05-13-09] Iridium’s next-generation global marine satellite communication system Iridium OpenPort, has completed sea trials on a variety of vessels, the company announced May 12.
Zodiac Shipping Agencies, one of the first shipping companies to sign up for Iridium OpenPort, conducted sea trials on two ships in coordination with AND Group. Peter Döhle Schiffahrts-KG conducted extensive sea trials with an Iridium OpenPort unit on a container ship under a service agreement with Vizada.
With testing completed, Iridium said that worldwide commercial rollout is now underway.
“The feedback from beta test platforms has been overwhelmingly positive, and we have a strong backlog of orders from shipowners who recognize the unique value proposition of Iridium OpenPort. In the current economic climate, shipowners are looking for ways to trim operating costs for ships at sea, and Iridium OpenPort offers a very cost-effective alternative to other broadband satellite systems in terms of hardware, installation and monthly usage costs,” said Don Thoma, executive vice president of marketing for Iridium.
Introduced in mid-2008, Iridium OpenPort provides three independent phone lines and a separate scalable data circuit supporting speeds of 9.6 to 128 kilobytes per second.