Multicasting: Connectivity Between Ship and Shore



Brent Bruun, Executive Vice President of Mobile Broadband, KVH Industries,


There is little doubt that one of the key drivers for improving connectivity between ship and shore is the need for more and more information that will enable greater operational efficiencies onboard. Termed ‘Big Data,’ the whole question of a greater need for information has been discussed at length during various shipping conferences and events during 2015. Yet shipping is a very conservative and traditional industry. The maritime industry has spent the past twenty years trying to limit the amount of data going on and off vessels, while the rest has been doing the opposite in adopting Big Data. Availability of such data offers incredible possibilities for understanding every aspect of a maritime business.


Similarly, the internet of things (IoT), a term used to explain how devices are connected to the internet for the purpose of performance monitoring, could reap huge efficiency benefits and ultimately
save money. Crew internet usage is also an important consideration to factor into the equation as morale is significantly improved when seafarers have regular contact with friends and family via e-mail and social media. Licensed entertainment such as news, sporting events and films play an important part in creating a harmonious workforce.

The recent quarterly survey by Crewtoo (the Crewtoo Seafarers Happiness Index) which benchmarks seafarers’ responses to ten questions about life at sea cited a lack of investment in connectivity as a key factor in an overall reduction in morale. With personnel onboard and ashore being able to view the same real-time data simultaneously, solutions to problems can be managed more effectively. Not only that but the monitoring and analysis of equipment performance on vessels can lead to preventative maintenance avoiding expensive replacement. Similarly, frequent
weather updates and wave forecasts being transmitted to the ship are key factors…

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