The ADF and Inmarsat have agreed to a $221 million contract extension for the provision of commercial satellite communications airtime services and managed hardware.
Brigadier Gregory Novak, Commander Defence Strategic Communications Branch and Todd McDonell, President Inmarsat Global Government, announced the contract extension to 2027.
“Inmarsat has supported ADF satellite communications requirements at home and overseas for over 30 years," BRIG Novak said. "This partnership has increased our capability to support wide-ranging ADF operations and provide greatly improved quality of life services for our deployed people.”
The overall commitment of the contract for satellite services is now $331 million over the 10-year term, including options for three extensions of two years each.
This contract between Defence and Inmarsat has now evolved to a full Inmarsat Managed Service, which includes: access to the Operational Monitoring and Control System (OMCS), which allows Defence to act as a virtual satellite operator, independently assigning bandwidth amongst the fleet and monitoring bandwidth in real time; a Crew Quality of Life system which provides bandwidth for crew welfare services and has reportedly led to a 70 per cent reduction in operating costs onboard the ships with the solution; as well as hardware, software, training, Defence Restricted Network access, and more.
The OCMS has been developed in line with Defence requirements over the past three years.
“Inmarsat has always been and continues to be committed to the same high quality standards to which the ADF holds itself," McDonell said.
OMCS is now entering the sustainment and enhancement term of the contract through to 2027. This system serves as a sovereign virtual satellite operations centre, allowing the ADF to independently allocate resources, track usage and implement operational changes in real time.
This enables the ADF to control its satellite service use directly without the requirement to work changes or issues through Inmarsat.