Geolocation coverage: Plastimo and Sigfox want to Connect the Oceans

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Geolocation coverage: Plastimo and Sigfox want to Connect the Oceans

Plastimo, an international player in the boating industry, and IoT-Service provider Sigfox join their forces to offer total geolocation coverage across the worlds oceans starting 2020. Eutelsat ELO nano-satellite constellation will provide data for the new service.

The French company Plastimo has long industrial expertise in manufacturing and designing safety equipment for boating consumers and professionals. The company turned to Sigfox to improve and broaden the application of digital technologies integrated into its safety equipment. One of the specific requirements was to quickly and reliably locate seafarers in the ocean.

Our challenge is to improve safety at sea, by using the potential of connected solutions, and make our products accessible to as many sailors as possible,

explains Frédéric Blaudeau, Marketing Director at Plastimo.

By combining the expertise of our two companies, we can offer the boating industry an integrated, complete and innovative solution.

Today, Sigfox is able to meet the demand for both innovative and affordable connectivity solutions. Based on Sigfox technology, Plastimo is able to differentiate its products for general consumers, while also developing high-end equipment for increasingly demanding professional markets. For Plastimo, it is important to invest in technology and bring to market exclusive products, which meet the needs of all sailors when it comes to safety at sea,

explains Patrick Cason, Managing Director of Sigfox France. Plastimo also hopes to benefit from the future ELO nanosatellite constellation, deployed and operated by Eutelsat. From 2020, the constellation will support Sigfox’s connectivity services, providing global coverage across all seas and oceans. So far, geolocation functionality was not available at an affordable price for the boating market. ELO will soon allow the location of a person lost at sea or shipwrecked in a Plastimo life raft or wearing a Plastimo life jacket, at a reasonable price.
The ELO constellation uses the Sigfox protocol available in more than 65 countries today. The life jackets produced by Plastimo will be supported by either Sigfox’s terrestrial network or its satellite network. Thus, life jackets can be located several tens of kilometers from the coasts of the countries already covered by the Sigfox terrestrial network, even before the ELO constellation is available. First nanosatellites are supposed to start operating in 2020.
In the future, life jackets equipped with Sigfox satellite connectivity will be locatable across all oceans – the new connectivity will be simple to use and does not require heavy and bulky batteries to maintain power.

Author: Tim Cole
Image Credit: Plastimo

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