Press Release

ORBCOMM Announces Successful Launch of AIS-Enabled Satellite

By SpaceRef Editor
October 15, 2011
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VesselSat1 expands ORBCOMM’s satellite AIS service

ORBCOMM Inc. ORBC +1.83% , a global satellite data communications company focused on two-way Machine-to-Machine (M2M) communications, today announced the successful launch of VesselSat1, an Automatic Identification Service (AIS) enabled satellite built by LuxSpace Sarl (LuxSpace), an affiliate of OHB System AG. VesselSat1 launched from the Indian Space Research Organization’s (ISRO) launch pad at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh near the Bay of the Bengal at 1:30 AM EDT. The satellite has been successfully separated from the PSLV launch vehicle in a proper equatorial orbit.

ORBCOMM is the exclusive licensee for the AIS data collected by VesselSat1. AIS data is used for ship tracking and other maritime navigational and safety efforts. After successful completion of in-orbit testing and check-out, VesselSat1 will expand the coverage of ORBCOMM’s satellite AIS service in the equatorial region, where there is significant shipping activity and critical need for maritime surveillance. This satellite will also provide additional capacity, higher refresh rates and improved message delivery speeds for ORBCOMM AIS users worldwide. In addition, VesselSat1 and VesselSat2, which is planned to be launched later this year, will supplement ORBCOMM’s next generation (OG2) constellation of 18 AIS-enabled satellites that currently are under construction. These two AIS-only satellites will have equatorial and polar orbits, respectively and provide ideal complements to the OG2 constellation.

“The successful launch of VesselSat1 into an equatorial orbit is a significant milestone in providing broader coverage, expanded data collection capabilities and higher detection rates for ORBCOMM’s AIS service,” said Marc Eisenberg, CEO of ORBCOMM. “We look forward to once again delivering AIS users the most comprehensive and near-real-time coverage of any satellite system in the market and to improve the visibility of vessel activity worldwide as we continue to enhance the functionality and performance of our network.”

VesselSat1 is undergoing initial in-orbit testing and is expected to enter into commercial service before year end.

About ORBCOMM Inc.

ORBCOMM is a leading global satellite data communications company, focused on Machine-to-Machine (M2M) communications. Its customers include Caterpillar Inc., Doosan Infracore America, Hitachi Construction Machinery, Hyundai Heavy Industries, Asset Intelligence a division of I.D. Systems, Inc., Komatsu Ltd., Manitowoc Crane Companies, Inc., and Volvo Construction Equipment among other industry leaders. By means of a global network of low-earth orbit (LEO) satellites and accompanying ground infrastructure, ORBCOMM’s low-cost and reliable two-way data communication services track, monitor and control mobile and fixed assets in four core markets: commercial transportation; heavy equipment; industrial fixed assets; and marine/homeland security. ORBCOMM based products are installed on trucks, containers, marine vessels, locomotives, backhoes, pipelines, oil wells, utility meters, storage tanks and other assets. Through the recently acquired StarTrak Information Technologies, LLC, ORBCOMM is an innovator and leading provider of tracking, monitoring and control services for the refrigerated transport market. Under its ReeferTrak(R) and GenTrak(TM) brands, the company provides customers with the ability to proactively monitor, manage and remotely control their refrigerated transport assets. ORBCOMM is headquartered in Fort Lee, New Jersey and has its network control center in Dulles, Virginia. For more information, visit www.orbcomm.com .

SpaceRef staff editor.