What better way to end the year than with some exciting news from the industry. But first, let’s get a bit technical and talk about FOTA for a moment. FOTA stands for ‘firmware-over-the-air’ and is a well-known concept. It’s the invisible technology behind smartphone and tablet updates and upgrades that we believe happen automagically (yes, automatically and magically). But the usability of FOTA is much wider. The technology is integrated into every BlueTraker terminal and enables them to be remotely updated or upgraded without interruption of the terminal operation. It could, for example, fix a bug, provide system updates or put in place a new functionality or new features.
Whenever a BlueTraker equipped vessel is within reach of the GPRS signal all the necessary software maintenance tasks are run over the air. It removes the need for special cables, computers or third-party programs and particularly for those costly visits to the vessel. The implementation of the updates/upgrades is via our Cloud-based Telematic Data Aggregation Server (TDS) and the browser-basedSecondScreen app. The TDS, in general, receives a variety of data/reports from vessels through the satellite or mobile network communication channel (bi-directional data exchange). FOTA, on the other hand, is here to update terminal firmware over the GSM network. However, in case of urgency, Iridium satellite constellation can be used as well – a choice made by the SecondScreen operator.
Key FOTA advantages and benefits:
- Cost effective – no need to board the vessel.
- Instant execution – the update starts immediately after the command is launched.
- Multilevel protection – the process is secure as the protocol is encrypted to prevent unauthorised activity.
- GSM network – affordable solution with the possibility of Satellitechannel usage in case of urgency.
- Modular approach – Firmware updates and upgrades consist of the SW code embedded in various parts/modules of the terminal – not only the application software.
- User controlled – The SecondScreen operator has a complete control of the update process.
DSME shipyard in Korea is building 15 ice-going LNG carriers which will be BlueTraker LRIT/SSAS Arctic equipped
South Korea’s Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co Ltd (DSME) won a tender from OAO Yamal LNG to build, equip, launch and deliver up to 15 Arc7 ice-class tankers at the cost of $320m each. The Christophe de Margerie-class LNG tankers can sail at a speed of 19.5kt in open seas and 5kt in 1.5m-thick ice as well as 15m-high waves. They will have the ability to withstand temperatures down to -50°C when operating in arctic environments. Deliveries of tankers are scheduled for completion in Q1 2020. The tankers, to be built by DSME, are intended for the transportation of liquified natural gas from the Yamal peninsula.
At Bluetraker we are as honoured as we are excited to be chosen as the supplier of the LRIT (Long Range Identification and Tracking) and SASS (Ship Security Alert System) Arctic terminals. Namely, for vessels that operate in the extreme cold of the polar regions, BlueTraker LRIT and SSAS Arctic are the world’s only terminals capable and approved to operate within the extreme cold of Arctic and Antartic seas. You can read more about these products here.
The rapid melting of Arctic ice due to climate change is opening up new opportunities for Arctic marine navigation, including the Northern Sea Route which links the Atlantic and Pacific regions along Russia’s northern coast. The use of the North Sea Route has reduced the distance, time and transportation costs by one third as compared to the South Sea Route through the Suez Canal and to the Indian Ocean.
A new BlueTraker website launch
And finally, we’re joyful to announce the launch of our new website which coincides with the beginning of the holiday season as well as with our growing role as a global leader in intelligent tracking systems and monitoring for the maritime industry. So, here are the fireworks. Our new website provides a clear message of who we are, what we stand for and where our value to customer lies in products and solutions for fisheries and commercial vessels.
Not only it offers quick and easy access to essential information and features, our new website provides a more comprehensive understanding of the company’s innovative products and solutions. It boasts a clean design, intuitive and consistent site-wide navigation system with improved menu functionality that directs our visitors to the information most relevant to them. The website is completely responsive which means it’s built to provide an optimal viewing experience, easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling across a wide range of devices.
We will update the website on a regular basis with news of product launches, business activity and opportunities, corporate milestones, events and in-depth technology solutions we provide. Soon will follow our upgraded RMA (Return Material Authorization) and LMA (Learning Academy – BlueTraker for Partners) sub-portals and we plan to add more video content and product information to provide our customers with all of the information needed to plan for their tracking and monitoring projects in future.