Space Commerce

Spire Global Unveils Solution for Dark Shipping Detection

By Keith Cowing
Press Release
Spire Global
November 7, 2022
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Spire Global Unveils Solution for Dark Shipping Detection
Spire Global
Spire Global

Spire Global, Inc. (NYSE: SPIR) (“Spire” or “the Company”), a leading global provider of space-based data, analytics and space services, unveiled a dark shipping detection solution to track vessels that manipulate their reported position in order to conceal nefarious activities.

The Automatic Identification System (AIS) on a vessel helps avoid collisions at sea, track global shipping trends and monitor individual vessel activity; but crew members on board can manipulate the system by turning off the transponder to go dark or ‘spoofing’ the AIS to report false positions. Typically, this is done in order to hide activity that is illegal or could have negative consequences to the ship owner, such as illegal trading, loading or unloading sanctioned goods, or illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing.

Spire’s near real-time, global geolocation position validation service can uncover suspicious activity and pinpoint a vessel without the need for an approximate location. The applications are critical to governments, intelligence and security agencies, and nonprofit organizations’ efforts to identify and locate vessels that are breaking international law.

“For a long time, having the tools to accurately identify and track ships that are attempting to hide their activities or location has been the missing key to preventing sanctions evasion, illegal fishing, human trafficking and many more pressing societal issues,” said Peter Mabson, CEO, Spire Maritime. “Dark shipping detection builds on our breadth of maritime tracking solutions and underscores Spire’s mission to use data that can only be collected from space to improve life on Earth.”

Spire operates the world’s largest multipurpose constellation with more than 100 satellites. The company plans to launch additional products in 2023 for geolocation and identification of dark targets, at sea, on land, and in the air. Learn more at

About Spire Global, Inc.

Spire (NYSE: SPIR) is a leading global provider of space-based data, analytics and space services, offering access to unique datasets and powerful insights about Earth from the ultimate vantage point so that organizations can make decisions with confidence, accuracy, and speed. Spire uses one of the world’s largest multipurpose satellite constellations to source hard to acquire, valuable data and enriches it with predictive solutions. Spire then provides this data as a subscription to organizations around the world so they can improve business operations, decrease their environmental footprint, deploy resources for growth and competitive advantage, and mitigate risk. Spire gives commercial and government organizations the competitive advantage they seek to innovate and solve some of the world’s toughest problems with insights from space. Spire has offices in San Francisco, Boulder, Washington DC, Ontario, Glasgow, Oxfordshire, Luxembourg, and Singapore. To learn more, visit

Kristina Spychalski
Senior Manager, Communications

SpaceRef co-founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.