Inmarsat named Volvo Ocean Race Partner once again

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Inmarsat has once again been selected to provide Satellite Communications for one of the toughest tests of sailing endurance – the Volvo Ocean Race.

Those taking part in the 2011-12 Ocean Race can rely on voice and high speed data connectivity from the marine satellite services terminal – Fleetbroadband.

The race is also endorsing the Isat Phone Pro satellite phone, Inmarsat’s new global handheld satellite phone, by including it in the boats’ safety kits.

“FleetBroadband has proved it can deliver a flawless performance in tough conditions and that is absolutely essential for us,” said Knut Frostad, chief executive officer of the Volvo Ocean Race.

“We need to be able to get reliable and high quality material off the boats and deliver it to the world with immediacy.

“You could say that the DNA of the Volvo Ocean Race is really based around moving images. And to be able to transmit these images from the boats is core to our communication and story building around the race.

“In many ways Inmarsat’s FleetBroadBand has revolutionized the sport of offshore sailing. And by enabling us to be so connected to the boats, we can monitor them 24 hours a day from our Control Room in Alicante. This is crucial for our safety procedures and the onboard safety equipment is a vital tool for the crew in emergency situations.”

The race covers more than 39,000 nautical miles and starts in Alicante, Spain and finishes in Galway, Ireland 2012

Each one of the 70 Volvo Race boats will be outfitted with a Thrane Sailor Fleetbroadband 500 system providing simultaneous voice and high speed data communications which members of the crew will utilize to send live and store and forward video as well as email bulletins, radio interviews, photos and blogging. The video footage will be in HD.

Inmarsat is also outfitting each vessel with a Fleetbroadband 150 for crew welfare plus Mini C systems for global positioning.

The global audience of race fans is estimated to be up to 1.3 billion people