Satcoms to improve running of Brazilian rail network

23 January 2020: Inmarsat mobile satellite connectivity is set to speed up delivery and improve operational safety across Brazil’s railway network.

Inmarsat partner Globalsat Group, through its Brazilian affiliate Globalsat do Brasil, has signed a multi-year contract with Rumo SA, the largest transport and logistics company in Latin America. Globalsat Group will provide a solution leveraging Inmarsat satellite connectivity and Cobham SATCOM terminals to connect Rumo’s cargo trains, decreasing the time in which goods can be transported across the country and improving the safety of trains, support vehicles and the people operating them.

Rumo is responsible for managing 14,000km (8,600 miles) of railway track in Brazil, with the Globalsat Group project initially focusing on 2,000km (1,200 miles) of the Northern Railway which connects six key states to the Port of Santos.

Long delays

As most of the tracks pass through remote areas with unreliable or non-existent network coverage, train drivers, railway engineers and transport managers have no way of communicating effectively. As a result, drivers cannot receive live traffic updates and trains cannot progress until they receive updates from the control centre. This causes long delays to trains and creates a variety of logistical challenges as well as increased operational costs.

The first stage of the project will begin early this year and will see Globalsat Group equipping 300 of Rumo’s cargo trains with Cobham EXPLORER 325 BGAN terminals, EXPLORER Mobile Gateways and the PRISM PTT+ service,  delivering uninterrupted connectivity, even in the most isolated of areas without mobile coverage. This will enable accurate real-time tracking of each train as well as reliable voice and data communication between drivers, maintenance crews and regional control centres. The framework’s intent is to see 1,600 locomotives provisioned with highly reliable BGAN connectivity, ensuring an efficient, profitable and safe railway network.

Stronger economy

Igor Falcao, Head of Globalsat do Brasil and Senior Vice President of Sales of Globalsat Group said: “In Brazil, rail is the most important transportation channel for many industries including agriculture, commodities, forestry and consumer goods. So a more efficient network means a stronger economy. Rumo’s rail network is the only one connecting the central state of Mato Grosso to the largest port in Latin America, Santos. The connectivity improvements being brought by mobile satellite communications will improve Rumo’s operations, making rail a more reliable and effective transport proposition that the Brazilian economy can depend on.”

Alberto Palacios, CEO Globalsat Group said: “Our solution is set to transform the way Rumo operates by providing much greater visibility over its assets and infrastructure, as well as reducing its costs. Globalsat Group has developed a compelling solution for rail network and logistics operators working in remote parts of South America, and we are delighted to be working with Rumo, the largest transport and logistics company in Brazil on this integral project.”

Mike Carter, President of Inmarsat Enterprise added: “Inmarsat is proud to be helping enable this project, alongside our partners Globalsat Group and Cobham, in Brazil, a country in which we have a long history of working. Strong and consistent connectivity is pivotal for the continued growth of organisations across the country and satellite is enabling many infrastructure projects, taking productivity and efficiency gains to the next level.”

For more information contact news@inmarsat.com.