Plastimo to use Sigfox and Eutelsat for life jacket tracking
Written by: Sam Fenwick | Published:

Plastimo, a manufacturer of safety equipment for boating consumers and professionals, and Sigfox will together offer geolocation coverage across all the world’s oceans from 2020. This will be used to quickly and reliably locate seafarers that have gone overboard and are wearing Plastimo’s life jackets or are in one of its life rafts.

The service will be supported by the ELO low Earth orbit nano-satellite constellation, which will be operated by Eutelsat, Sigfox's partner.

From 2020, the ELO nanosatellite constellation will support Sigfox's connectivity services, providing global coverage across all seas and oceans. Plastimo and Sigfox claim that existing constellations do not offer this geolocation functionality at an affordable price for the boating market and that ELO do so.

The life jackets produced by Plastimo will be supported by either Sigfox's terrestrial network (present in more than 65 countries)or the satellite network. This means that the life jackets will be able to be located several tens of kilometres from the coasts of the many countries already covered by the Sigfox terrestrial network, before the ELO constellation is available. The first two nanosatellites will be operational in 2020.

Plastimo claims that its new life vests will be as just as comfortable and efficient as its other designs, and that the new connectivity will be simple to use and will not require heavy and bulky batteries to maintain power.

"Our challenge is to improve safety at sea, by using the potential of connected solutions, and make our products accessible to as many sailors as possible," said Frédéric Blaudeau, marketing director at Plastimo. "By combining the expertise of our two companies, we can offer the boating industry an integrated, complete and innovative solution."

"Today, Sigfox is able to meet the demand for both innovative and affordable connectivity solutions. Based on Sigfox technology, Plastimo is able to differentiate its products for general consumers, while also developing high-end equipment for increasingly demanding professional markets. For Plastimo, it is important to invest in technology and bring to market exclusive products, which meet the needs of all sailors when it comes to safety at sea," said Patrick Cason, Sigfox France’s managing director.

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