While at Nor-Shipping 2013, Marlink announced that Stolt Tankers has chosen the Sealink Global Ku-band VSAT service to upgrade its entire fleet of deep sea and regional tankers. The contract, signed in April 2013, covers the provision of Sealink to 90 tankers, resulting in significant bandwidth enhancements across the fleet, meeting Stolt’s changing connectivity requirements for operational and crew communication.
As the owner of one of the world’s largest and most sophisticated global tanker fleets, Stolt Tankers required a global VSAT service to enable faster, more reliable and predictable cost connectivity and voice communication for its vessels. The company is experiencing huge demand for reliable connectivity with higher bandwidth today, but also requires a future proof solution to meet its needs tomorrow.
“With Marlink’s Global Ku-band VSAT service, we get the ability to operate using bandwidth-hungry applications, which helps to improve our efficiency, logistics and administration, whilst providing Internet and voice calling for crew,” says Mark Martecchini, Managing Director Shipowning for Stolt Tankers. “We also have flexibility for the future as the services are prepared for possible future migration to new High Throughput Satellite services based on Ka-, and Ku-band.”
Marlink has designed a hybrid network solution using global Sealink connectivity featuring automatic beam switching as the primary channel and MSS Services as back-up for Stolt Tankers. The XChange solution from Astrium Services acts as the central platform for delivering value-added services for each vessel’s crew connectivity and offers easy administration of user accounts, crew and network access, and pre-paid services.
Marlink has integrated an MPLS connection to Stolt’s Headquarters, to secure reliable end-to-end connectivity and will provide global support for all aspects of the multi-layered network. The solution is designed with the most extensive Ku-band VSAT coverage on the market today, a MSS backup and a Service Level Agreement. This integration with terrestrial systems results in a fully managed connectivity service for Stolt.
“Stolt Tankers chose Marlink as we are a highly experienced service provider and were able to meet the requirement for fully managed voice and data communication services using a combination of satcom and terrestrial connectivity, whilst providing global support,” comments Tore Morten Olsen, Head of Maritime Services at Astrium Services. “We have developed a customised, future-proof solution that enables Stolt to adapt its connectivity to suit new requirements and to leverage new broadband services when they are available.”
Stolt has chosen the highly-regarded customised Sealink Service Agreement, which ensures full 24/7/365 access to Marlink’s worldwide support network, staffed by experienced VSAT experts and engineers. Marlink will also train Stolt’s own engineers to prepare each vessel for installation, ensuring an efficient start-up for the company’s new VSAT network.
Installation is expected to start in June with all vessels scheduled to be online by the end 2014.