Iridium partner Rock Seven has released a new firmware update for its innovative RockFLEET vessel tracking system. RockFLEET software 1.4.4 introduces several new features and enhancements including new functionality that can automatically change the regularity of location transmissions based on whether a vessel is in transit or stationary.
The RockFLEET system obtains a position using the GPS satellite network and then transmits that position to shore systems using Iridium Short Burst Data (SBD) at user-defined intervals. The new motion-based transmission function enables even more cost-effective vessel tracking as it can automatically reduce the amount of data sent via RockFLEET when a vessel is on station or dockside. This combined with an optional GSM module that features automatic least cost data routing, and prices as low as £0.03 per location transmission on SBD, positions RockFLEET as a cost-focused, yet sophisticated vessel tracking system for merchant fleets and offshore vessels. Further still, the competitively priced RockFLEET unit is simple to install and the airtime service is based on a Pay As You Go model, with no annual contracts.
“RockFLEET reduces capital investment with keenly priced hardware and very low-cost daily operation. It delivers the reliability and innovative functionality required for owners and operators to turn vessel position data into a tangible way of increasing safety and efficiency, with relatively minimal investment. It’s a sophisticated system but positioned to make vessel tracking available to all operators regardless of size or budget,” comments Nick Farrell, Director, Rock Seven.
Other improvements introduced with RockFLEET firmware 1.4.4 include a 10% improvement on battery life. RockFLEET is the only Iridium based vessel tracking system with both a primary-power input (9-30v DC) and internal battery back-up, a feature that was developed to enhance vessel safety and security. With its integral battery, RockFLEET will continue to transmit a vessel’s position for over 2 weeks when primary power is cut. The system can also be configured to transmit an alarm to pre-defined users on shore should RockFLEET detect a loss of power, acting as a reliable warning to management that something is wrong. Another new feature with firmware 1.4.4 is the ability for authorised users to request an ad-hoc vessel position report at any time outside of the normal transmission schedule, giving the shore office a means to find out exactly where vessels are at any given moment.
To enable these new features, Rock Seven has also developed improvements to the CONNECT smartphone/tablet app, which is designed to offer wireless access to the RockFLEET unit and two-way messaging for crew on board. Using the CONNECT app, upgrading to RockFLEET firmware 1.4.4 is a straightforward process that is free of charge and does not require specialised knowledge. The new RockFLEET firmware is available via the Firmware Update option in the CONNECT app.