ADC has announced that cruise ship cellular communications company Maritime Communications Partner AS, fully owned by Telenor ASA, has expanded its drive to enable shipboard mobile voice and data communications by installing ADC InterReach UnisonR In-Building cellular systems on an additional 21 cruise ships in the North American market.
The InterReach Unision systems will provide GSM and CDMA mobile coverage in the ships' public areas as well as passenger cabins and crew quarters. Each ship will typically be fitted with one main hub, four expansion hubs, and 25 remote units to provide the wireless coverage, and traffic will be connected with mobile networks on the mainland via existing satellite data links on each ship.
"This has been our biggest contract to date and represents a massive breakthrough for us in to the US market," said Svein Haglund, technical project manager for MCP. "ADC has been a critical component of this success, allowing us to pitch for contracts in the knowledge that we can fulfill our customers' requirements for providing high quality mobile and data access services for their customers."
MCP chose the ADC InterReach Unison solution because of its overall performance, its cost-effective deployment, its ease of maintenance, and its pinpoint control. Unison systems are ideally suited for high-density environments such as ships (which pose unique wireless coverage challenges due to their myriad bulkheads and cabins), because each remote antenna unit delivers the same signal strength to ensure uniform coverage. In addition, the Unison system automatically alerts MCP's control centre if there is a component failure so this can be patched remotely and the fault is temporarily rectified until maintenance staff can fix the problem when the ship reaches port. And thanks to the Unison system's active, hub-based architecture, IT personnel on ships can fully control coverage at any time. For example, they can turn off wireless access in certain parts of the ship during dinners and performances.
"Our InterReach Unison system has been deployed by most of the world's major passenger ship companies because it delivers great performance and flexibility with easy deployment and a low cost of management," said John Spindler, vice president of product management for ADC. "We look forward to working with MCP in its effort to improve the passenger travel experience by extending the benefits of mobile communications out to sea."