ST Engineering iDirect Collaborates with Paratus and KNS to Bring Reliable, High-Speed Connectivity to Mining Vessels

ST Engineering iDirect Collaborates with Paratus and KNS to Bring Reliable, High-Speed Connectivity to Mining Vessels

The collaboration will see Paratus deploy the iDirect modems with KNS Ku-antennas to deliver bandwidth-intensive mobility services

Herndon, Va., August 25, 2020 – ST Engineering iDirect, a company of ST Engineering North America, today announced that its long-term customer Paratus, a pan-African telecommunications group which provides satellite connectivity across Africa, has deployed its iDirect modems with marine antenna from manufacturer and integrator KNS Inc., to provide reliable, high-speed connectivity to mining ships based in Guinea, West Africa.

The vessels and their crew require constant and reliable communications to keep in permanent contact with their headquarters on land, and with other shipping vessels during operations at the Boffa port in Guinea, where 3G/4G connectivity is poor and internet services are limited.

The ships were installed with the iDirect modem and KNS 1.2m Maritime Antenna Z12Mk2 in Shanghai, China, enabling bandwidth-intensive applications including video, email and WeChat to be run. Paratus remotely configured the modems and commissioned the antennas for the ships when they arrived in Boffa. Commissioning is completed with the ships being operational.

“We are pleased to be working alongside our long-term partner ST Engineering iDirect as we continue to address poor connectivity issues that currently affect Africa,” said Colwyn van Rensburg, Chief Development Officer at Paratus. “The work we have undertaken has more than satisfied our customer, and the company is looking to implement further connectivity for its offices in the future. We look forward to our continued success together.”

“Our collaboration with ST Engineering iDirect stretches back for over a decade,” commented EZ Gao, Manager of Asia and MENA at KNS. “We already have plans in place to expand our collaboration to the market, building upon this very strong foundation to drive expansion towards more price-sensitive customers in certain market segments and regions to enable this kind of mission-critical connectivity at sea.”

“We are excited to extend our relationship with Paratus, whom we have worked with for many years to provide data rates and multi-service capabilities to their customers,” said Pieter-Paul Mooijman, Regional Vice President for Africa at ST Engineering iDirect. “Paratus is already utilizing ST Engineering iDirect hubs to power connectivity in Angola, Namibia and South Africa. This collaboration further demonstrates how satellite is an effective and reliable form of connectivity for traditionally hard-to-reach locations, with the versatility to serve diverse markets and applications.”

Recognized as the gold-standard in the mobility sector, iDirect solutions are optimized for small to large-scale, multi-beam networks. The advanced quality of service maximizes the value of a shared TDMA bandwidth pool for traffic prioritization and bandwidth management, allowing for SLA configuration and prioritization. The iDirect system incorporates a number of integrated mobility management technologies that enable seamless connectivity when a vessel automatically switches between satellite beams as it moves from one geographic footprint to another. With the ease of installation and management of the iDirect system, service providers can reduce ship visits, installation and modem updates, and optimize their networks for higher efficiency, performance and scalability.