Marlink Adds Starlink and Eutelsat OneWeb to PONANT Hybrid Network

The installation is the first at the North Pole to combine Marlink’s Sealink GEO VSAT, with Starlink, Eutelsat OneWeb and Iridium LEO services. Picture © PONANT – Julien Fabro

Published Dec 2, 2023 5:18 PM by The Maritime Executive

[By: Marlink]

Marlink, the smart network and digital solutions company has completed the integration of Starlink and Eutelsat OneWeb LEO internet services on PONANT’s Le Commandant Charcot, the world’s only luxury icebreaker, to provide all three LEO solutions for the ship’s polar itineraries.

The installation is the first in the maritime sector to combine Marlink’s Sealink GEO VSAT, with Starlink, Eutelsat OneWeb and Iridium LEO services. The agreement with PONANT reflects Marlink’s leadership in combining guaranteed throughput VSAT services with the emerging high speed, low latency LEO services.

The combination of three primary services means that PONANT can select the backbone VSAT for data that requires a guaranteed throughput and in addition enjoy augmented polar coverage using Starlink, Eutelsat OneWeb and Iridium LEO services. Together Starlink and Eutelsat OneWeb will enable higher speed connections across a range of applications, raising the available throughput and reducing latency for guests and crew usage onboard.

Leveraging Marlink’s expertise in smart hybrid networks, the bandwidth delivered by GEO VSAT, LEO networks and 4G/5G services will facilitate seamless collaboration between the ship’s bridge, engineering crew and shore teams, and enhance connectivity to friends and family, thanks to Marlink’s SD-WAN-orchestrated connectivity.

A hybrid electric Polar exploration vessel powered by Liquefied Natural Gas; Le Commandant Charcot is the world’s only luxury icebreaking cruiseship. With 123 staterooms and luxury service, this innovative polar vessel takes passengers to the remotest, most isolated regions of the polar world, such as the geographic North Pole, the Weddell Sea, the Ross Sea and Peter I Island. She is an integral member of PONANT's fleet, which comprises 13 French-flagged small ships dedicated to voyages of exploration.

“PONANT is dedicated to innovation in all aspects of our operations, both for our company and our customers. The need for top-tier connectivity remains paramount, even when operating in high altitudes and extreme weather conditions,” says Jean-Louis Cambert, CIO, PONANT. “Marlink's capability to integrate the best available connectivity across various bands and frequencies allows us to keep Le Commandant Charcot connected, ensuring the safety of our guests and crew.”

“Marlink is delighted to extend the solution orchestrated for PONANT to include Starlink and Eutelsat OneWeb, giving Le Commandant Charcot the unique combination of available services to stay connected wherever she sails,” says Tore Morten Olsen, President, Maritime, Marlink. “Our expertise in creating digital hybrid solutions means these new services can provide immediate guest benefits while also contributing to safe and smart vessel operations.”

The products and services herein described in this press release are not endorsed by The Maritime Executive.