Onboard Connectivity Increases Revenue

Connectivity cuts operational costs in many ways, including saving bunker fuel through better voyage planning.
Enhanced connectivity cuts operational costs in many ways, including voyage planning to save bunker fuel.

Commercial maritime operations have a strong business incentive for investing in advanced satellite communications, according to information presented in “The Benefits of Maritime SATCOM – the Enterprise Ripple Effect,” the second segment of KVH’s SATCOM 101 Webinar Series.

“Every significant operation cost can be reduced by improved connectivity,” says Jim Dodez, Vice President of Marketing and Strategic Planning at KVH. A leading example is the cost of bunker fuel, which represents 46% of a typical Panamax containership’s operating budget. Onboard connectivity saves bunker fuel by providing access to real-time data so the vessel can travel at an optimal speed for arriving in port at just the right time.  Speeding up and arriving too early wastes fuel (e.g. increasing speed 22%, from 18 to 22 knots, uses twice as much bunker fuel), while missing a port schedule can lead to additional fees. Traveling to arrive at just the right time can best be coordinated if the vessel has reliable and consistent access to data about weather conditions and other factors.

Additional cost-saving ripple effects created by enhanced connectivity include:

  • Reduced recruiting and training costs: Connectivity allows crew members to stay in touch with family, friends and their lives ashore, which improves morale and lowers turnover
  • Reduced administrative costs: More efficient delivery of ECDIS chart updates eliminates the need to physically deliver and load CDs, and is one of many savings in administrative costs
  • Reduced maintenance and repair costs: Connectivity provides remote access to onboard PCs and other IT equipment, which can eliminate vessel support calls that typically run $2,500-$3,500 each

Given that satellite communications costs represent only 0.3% of a typical Panamax containership’s operating budget, the business benefits of advanced SATCOM are far greater than communications costs.

Coming up next: “Best Practices for Managing a Maritime SATCOM Implementation.” The third segment in the SATCOM 101 Webinar Series takes place Tuesday, Jan. 8. By registering, you also gain access to the presentations from the first two segments.

About Jill Connors 94 Articles
In orbit as Media Relations Manager for KVH Industries, Inc.

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