Enabling Mission-Critical Broadband for an Asian Naval Fleet

By Yana Persky 4 min read

Are your naval or coast guard vessels providing coastline security? Are they monitoring and defending home and international waters? Are they safeguarding your citizens and allies from pirates and terrorists? Are they providing emergency medical evacuations and conducting rescue missions?

Communications at sea is developing at a fast pace, with increasing quantities of advanced data and services – from collecting technical information from vessels to providing video conferencing and remote surveillance. But what if your moving naval vessels at sea aren’t covered by mobile networks and their broadband connectivity stops at the coastline? The lack of a reliable broadband connection hampers the capabilities of any coast guard or navy to enable greater levels of security and surveillance across vast seas, and dramatically reduces operational efficiency.

THE CHALLENGES

Plan and execute private LTE rollout | Bring mission-critical broadband to sea | Provide high-capacity, low-latency networks over long distances | Address remote and harsh environmental conditions | Provide connectivity for vessel-to-shore and vessel-to-vessel communications

To support maritime security and improve coast guard and navy surveillance at sea, an Asian navy required a turnkey solution for its offshore connectivity. The navy needed a highly reliable, low-latency and high-capacity communication infrastructure that would enrich their operations with video surveillance, video feeds, map images and massive database queries. The navy also looked for a viable solution both for vessel-to-shore and inter-vessel communications that would withstand vessel movements and challenging climatic conditions with high winds and heavy rainfall.

THE SOLUTION

Ceragon’s Network Rollout services | Best-in-class procedures and processes | Ceragon PointLink Access system with private LTE | High-capacity vessel-to-shore communication links | Reliable vessel-to-vessel communication links

In order to introduce a mission-critical broadband infrastructure at sea, connect vessels to shore and accommodate military requirements, the navy turned to Ceragon for a private LTE network (Fig. 1). Ceragon delivered a comprehensive LTE turn-key solution that included eNodeB radios, LTE Evolved Packet Core (EPC), user equipment (CPE), PointLink Access and network management system (NMS) to support the entire LTE device lifecycle. Featuring a unique gyro-stabilized antenna, PointLink Access provides full 360-degree coverage and maintains high-quality communication links when sailing along the coastline and at sea.

Ceragon’s PointLink Access system enabled the naval vessels to:

  • Introduce remote operations by delivering high-speed voice and data communications including online video feeds, images and maps from vessels to command centers on the main ship or onshore
  • Enjoy reliable connectivity up to 60km for line-of-site (LOS) conditions in licensed frequency bands
  • Benefit from a guaranteed latency of 50mS for a one-way link
  • Provide high-capacity and low-latency communication links among a group of vessels outside of coastline coverage to better optimize command efficiency – daughter vessels communicate with the mother vessel and any other daughter vessel in the group (Fig.2)
  • Minimize interference to/from other on-vessel systems to zero; the stabilized nature of LTE antennas, with the base station as the focal point, ensures that interference coming from various directions (including other network users, signals and even onshore) has little-to-no impact on the intended service experience of offshore sites
  • Maintain communications regardless of movements/motions (location, heave, yaw, pitch and roll) and ensure that service is not affected by environmental factors

MissionCritical_Asian Naval _fig1

 

Fig. 1 Vessel-to-shore connectivity

MissionCritical_Asian Naval _fig2[2]

Fig. 2 Inter-vessel communication

Offshore broadband connectivity presents many challenges to network planners. The transition to deep-sea environments with moving vessels raises the demand for high-capacity, reliable, and safe mission-critical communication systems.

Private LTE network and Ceragon’s unique PointLink Access system with gyro-stabilized antennas proved to be the most reliable and resilient solution for the Asian navy. The system enabled its naval vessels to optimize performance, situational awareness, command efficiency and response time for any event in the open sea. Ceragon also succeeded in orchestrating several third-party vendors, incorporating various technologies within one holistic ecosystem using best-in-class rollout procedures, processes and tools and assumed end-to-end responsibility for the access and transport domains at sea, allowing the navy to focus on its mission, while Ceragon taking care of the rest.

 

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