World's First Commercial Activation of Iridium® GMDSS From AST

Trawler Trygvason was the first vessel fitted with the new communications capabilities (M/V Trygvason)

Published Jan 18, 2021 9:46 AM by Applied Satellite Technology (AST)

The historic Norwegian town of Haugesund, home to busy waterways dotted with fishing and shipping vessels recorded a new, groundbreaking chapter this week in its long maritime story. It became home to the world’s first commercial Iridium GMDSS installation.

The Norwegian trawler Trygvason put to sea following the installation of two Lars Thrane LT-3100S GMDSS terminals by local marine services specialist Brommeland Elektronikk A/S, with Iridium GMDSS service provided by remote communications solutions provider, Applied Satellite Technology (AST). The state-of-the-art terminal manufactured by Lars Thrane A/S is the only GMDSS terminal paired with Iridium’s truly global network and able to enjoy superior GMDSS coverage.

“When it comes to safety and communications, our maritime customers demand choice, capability, and above all, absolute dependability from their services and suppliers,” said Gregory Darling, AST’s Group Managing Director. “The launch of Iridium’s GMDSS service expands the options available to our seafaring customers, delivers significant additional capability and provides an IMO-approved, truly global distress service.” He added, “I’m delighted and incredibly proud to be part of this latest innovation at sea.”


First test call by radio surveyor Stig Harbak


Brommeland, a maritime electronics and communications specialist and valued AST partner has supported mariners in western Norway for 85 years. Per Helge Børseth, Managing Director of Brommeland said, “Our customer chose Iridium’s GMDSS solution because it offers the richest set of safety and associated services on the market, including immediate RCC-to-vessel voice call-back as well as standard voice and SMS in addition to guaranteed coverage in their operating region. This means the Trygvason can cut back on other on-board equipment and costs and simplify their operations whilst satisfying the critical maritime safety requirements.”

As well as voice and SMS, the LT-3100S features a unique Distress Alert & Safety Voice capability and a red button which, when pressed alerts the RCC and puts the vessel’s crew in direct conversation with an operator within 30 seconds.

Kyle Hurst, Director of Maritime Safety and Security Services for Iridium added, “This is the culmination of many years of effort to bring to market the next generation of safety-at-sea services. We’re delighted that mariners now have a new GMDSS option and through our partner AST we’ve started our customer journey.”

For more information, visit the AST website or email [email protected].

The opinions expressed herein are the author's and not necessarily those of The Maritime Executive.