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Voyager IP connects with the RV Tom Crean

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Richie McGrath, operations manager at Voyager IP, with the RV Tom Crean

In advance of the maiden voyage of Ireland’s newest and most sophisticated research ship, the RV Tom Crean, owned by the Marine Institute, members of the Voyager IP team travelled to the shipbuilding yard in Vigo, north-west Spain. They were there to install and commission the vessel’s VSAT and cellular WAN solutions, along with Wi-Fi and Firewall infrastructures.

Comprising a Sailor XTR 1000 VSAT system, complemented by the Celerway Stratus and StellaDoradus IR6 cellular combination, the RV Tom Crean is now connected to Voyager IP’s satcomms and cellular WAN service.

In maintaining a unified cyber threat management for the vessel, Voyager IP also installed an industry renowned Sophos XGS firewall.

Wi-Fi is at the frontline of the onboard experience but a fast, reliable wireless network across a vessel is a complex challenge. Poor Wi-Fi can be caused by several issues that include ‘dead zones’, signal interference, signal to noise ratio and channel utilisation. To counteract this, the Sophos Wi-Fi infrastructure was designed using Ekahau technology, for which Voyager IP is its agent in Ireland.

Voyager IP already supplies services to two Marine Institute vessels, the RV Celtic Voyager and the RV Celtic Explorer, both managed by P&O Maritime Service.

Gordon Furey, Instrumentation and IT manager at P&O Maritime Service, said, “Voyager IP provides P&O Maritime with an excellent level of customer service and its pooled VSAT solution is far more competitively priced than other providers. Moreover, we are on a first name basis with all the sales and support staff so whenever a problem occurs, which is not often, you always know who to call.”
Named after the legendary Irish polar explorer, the RV Tom Crean will be used by the Marine Institute and other State agencies and universities to undertake fisheries research, oceanographic and environmental research and seabed mapping surveys. It will also maintain and deploy weather buoys, observational infrastructure and ROVs (remotely operated vehicles).

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