A Clase launches Tracphone V11 and announces major upgrade

Equipment & Technology - February 9, 2012

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C A Clase, the distributor of marine electronics, will announce a major upgrade to its mini-VSAT Broadband network, and launch the brand-new TracPhone V11 at this year’s Oceanology (13th – 15th March 2012).

C A Clase says maritime VSAT company KVH will upgrade its mini-VSAT Broadband network for 2012 with the addition of global C-band satellite coverage overlaying its industry-leading Ku-band footprint.

"This first-of-its-kind unified dual-band maritime satellite communications network will provide multi-megabit service covering 95 per cent of the Earth’s surface, including all of the world’s major shipping routes, offshore oil fields and commercial fishing grounds," said C A Clase.

This major news sees the creation of the first next-generation global VSAT network using a single, relatively small antenna to provide offshore connectivity to vessels almost anywhere they travel. It is set to be a welcome development to those needing to replace expensive legacy services.

With approximately 2,000 systems sold, the mini-VSAT Broadband network is already the largest maritime VSAT system service, featuring the broadest Ku-band coverage area.

The TracPhone V11 satellite communication system is an onboard terminal which uses a single stabilized antenna with a unique dual-band transmit and receive capability, allowing it to seamlessly switch between the mini-VSAT Broadband network’s global C-band and Ku-band satellite coverage.

The 1m antenna delivers robust and seamless worldwide broadband connectivity at all times and is 85 per cent smaller and lighter than other solutions available on the market.

Unlike competing products, the V11 is one system and is much more reliable than multi antenna systems, C A Clases claims. It also uses the same below-deck modem for both the C-band and Ku-band for a unified customer solution, ensuring users are not contending with trying to use different networks, settings or protocols to run onboard applications.

Andy Banting, Commercial Marine Sales at C A Clase, commented: “This is a significant announcement for the industry and highlights KVH’s technological capabilities in the market.

"It also marks the creation of a truly next generation service for commercial vessels. KVH has already seen significant interest for the new global offering and we expect a full service to be available for commercial use at the end of June 2012.”

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