Sustainable scallop harvesting in Arctic by Tau Tech to be supported by Inmarsat Fleet Xpress


Market-leading maritime connectivity service will provide coverage, reliability to support Tau Tech’s pioneering seabed-harvesting methods in remote Barents Sea

Norwegian company Tau Tech is set to begin sustainable scallop harvesting in the Barents Sea, using technology from Inmarsat, the world leader in global, mobile satellite communications services. Inmarsat’s Fleet Xpress, the maritime industry’s leading broadband service, will deliver a consistent, stable, uninterrupted quality of service and seamless high-speed network coverage in the Arctic.

Traditional seabed dredging of scallops has not been allowed by Norwegian authorities for 30 years, due to its damaging effects on marine ecosystems. By facilitating the identification, selection, and sorting of shells without destroying the surrounding flora and fauna, Tau Tech’s pioneering approach to scallop harvesting aims to revive the harvesting of the valuable seafood resource at a commercial scale.

Scott Middleton, Regional Director Sales, Inmarsat Maritime, said “Digitalisation in the fishing sector is fast catching up, and Inmarsat has been working closely with fishing vessel operators to deliver integrated and scalable satellite communication solutions to match their operational needs and enable crew welfare. Tau Tech’s new solution opens the door to re-establish commercial scallop seabed harvesting on a fully sustainable basis. Inmarsat is proud to support the company’s project in the Barents Sea – not only by delivering connectivity but also by providing the option to digitalise and enhance vessel operations in the long term.”

Through the Fleet Edge platform, Inmarsat’s Fleet Xpress offers shipowners access to a broad portfolio of value-added services and supports a flexible, step-by-step approach to digitalisation. Services are delivered via a secure, dedicated network with no impact on mission-critical bandwidth. Fleet Xpress allows users to upgrade bandwidth easily as shipping companies adopt applications at a pace that suits them, from email and basic office applications to IoT-powered solutions and emerging technologies targeting fuel savings, emissions reduction, and other operational enhancements.

Jan Rogne, Technical Manager, Tau Tech, commented “Our unique precision seabed harvesting technology enables us to gently, yet efficiently harvest seafood without damaging their fragile surroundings. Inmarsat’s Fleet Xpress installed on our vessel Arctic Pearl, will help us to carry out our operations in a sustainable way and allow us to adopt new services and applications to further enhance operational sustainability, safety, and security as new challenges arise.”

Captain Svein Ole Sæther, Arctic Pearl, said “Inmarsat’s planned new Arctic satellites are particularly interesting to us, as they will greatly improve connectivity and communications in some of the most hard-to-reach areas on earth."

The Arctic Circle represents a rapidly growing connectivity region for high-quality broadband with increasing requirements from maritime customers. GX10A and 10B will be the world’s first mobile broadband payloads dedicated to the Arctic region, making Inmarsat the only provider offering dedicated high-throughput mobile broadband connectivity for maritime customers in the Arctic region. The multi-beam, high-throughput HEO (highly elliptical orbit) payloads will ensure continuous coverage and offer the ability to direct capacity in real-time to the areas of highest demand. The expansion of Inmarsat’s Global Xpress (GX) network is being delivered in partnership with Space Norway and its subsidiary Space Norway HEOSAT as part of the Arctic Satellite Broadband Mission.

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About Inmarsat

Inmarsat delivers world leading, innovative, advanced and exceptionally reliable global, mobile communications across the world – in the air, at sea and on land - that are enabling a new generation of commercial, government and mission-critical services. Inmarsat is powering the digitalisation of the maritime industry, making operations more efficient and safer than ever before. It is driving a new era of inflight passenger services for aviation, while ensuring that aircraft can fly with maximum efficiency and safety. Furthermore, Inmarsat is enabling the rapid expansion of the Internet of Things (IoT) and enabling the next wave of world-changing technologies that will underpin the connected society and help build a sustainable future. And now Inmarsat is developing the first-of-its-kind, multi-dimensional communications network of the future, ORCHESTRA.

In November 2021, Inmarsat and Viasat announced the planned combination of the two companies, to create a new leader in global communications. The deal is scheduled to close in the second half of 2022.

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