Icelandic maritime authorities are utilising the European Maritime Safety Agency’s (EMSA) Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) portfolio enabled by SES Networks’ managed connectivity services to support the country’s requirements for environmental protection and fisheries control, SES announced today.
The connected ELBIT HERMES 900 RPAS will perform maritime surveillance tasks in areas extending as far as 200 nautical miles from the shoreline, covering important areas of the Icelandic Exclusive Economic Zone, with missions lasting as long as 12 hours. SES Networks’ connectivity is utilised for this Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) RPAS to empower multiple Icelandic authorities – such as the Icelandic coast guard, the fisheries directorate, the environment agency, the customs directorate, and the search and rescue association – to remotely follow the missions via a dedicated data centre and to ensure timely decision-making.
Under a framework agreement, SES Networks will deliver managed satellite communications (SATCOM) connectivity services for EMSA missions, including secure end-to-end satellite and terrestrial links, capacity and teleport infrastructure, as well as distribution of the RPAS data via satellite internet services to end-users.
“Reliable connectivity is critical for timely decision-making during maritime missions, especially for search and rescue operations,” said EMSA’s Executive Director Ms Maja Markovčić Kostelac. “Stable, high-performance connectivity not only enables quick situational assessment, but it also boosts the cost-efficiency of resource deployment by the national authorities using our services. This matters all the more when critical data is being delivered to and from a moving platform in harsh meteorological conditions where there is no terrestrial infrastructure.”
“We have been developing our space and ground assets, as well as secure managed connectivity service capabilities, to support a variety of critical missions required by government customers,” said Nicole Robinson, Senior Vice President, Global Government at SES Networks. “RPAS missions are one of the key areas where we have built extensive expertise supporting a variety of global platforms, including processing and delivering data from multiple sensors to those fulfilling and monitoring mission-critical tasks. We are honoured to support EMSA and Icelandic authorities for these important missions in a geographically dispersed area.”