Harris Corp. developing real-time tracking for ships at sea

By Greg Pallone, Brevard County Reporter
Last Updated: Wednesday, June 14, 2017, 1:49 PM EDT

New technology from Melbourne-based Harris Corp. is making it safer on the world's busy oceans.

  • Melbourne-based Harris Corp. developing real-time tracking
  • Satellites will track vessels without a long delay
  • System will be online by the end of 2018

Satellite technology is now allowing real-time tracking of more than 250,000 ships at sea like cargo ships, cruise ships, tankers and fishing vessels.

Current transmitter systems have delays up to 45 minutes in locating ships, including Florida's 1,200-mile coastline.

The goal is to improve safety when ships veer off course, dodge bad weather, allow operations to find the most fuel-efficient routes and port operations.

"By sitting on that satellite, we can get that information from the ship, through the satellite, onto your desk in less than one minute — anywhere on the globe," said David Mottarella, of Harris Corp.

Harris is partnering with Canadian company exactEarth in the venture. The equipment continues to launch as part of Iridium Next satellites.

The entire system, which will cover 100 percent of the globe, is expected to be in place by the end of 2018.