Astrocast to integrate its satellite IoT technology into the ArrowTrack device.

Israeli firm ArrowSpot has signed a multi-million-dollar deal with Astrocast to integrate its satellite IoT technology into the ArrowTrack device to enable global asset tracking.

Swiss company Astrocast is a nanosatellite IoT network operator. ArrowSpot has signed a multi-million-dollar contract to start mass production of ArrowSpot’s ArrowTrack Sat device. The contract between Astrocast and ArrowSpot includes hardware integration and satellite IoT (satIoT) connectivity for an initial three-year period.

ArrowSpot’s technology provides the worldwide supply chain logistics industry with online information for safe and secure sensitive chilled cargo and high-value cargo. Clients working with ArrowSpot include ZIM Shipping Line and Oceanex intermodal transportation services.

A resilient supply chain requires round-the-clock monitoring, but connectivity via terrestrial networks covers only 15% of the planet. For many years, ArrowSpot looked for an effective IoT option to improve tracking and monitoring of moving assets across the globe. ArrowSpot and Astrocast joined forces earlier in the year to solve the problem of tracking assets across the remaining 85% of the world through using satIoT.

This contract is the culmination of that partnership. When mass produced, ArrowSpot’s ArrowTrack Sat hybrid communication tracking will combine cellular and satellite communication network access. By integrating Astrocast’s technology into ArrowTrack Sat and connecting to Astrocast’s nanosatellite network, ArrowSpot’s customers will achieve full visibility of their supply chains and fleets, providing them with effective global management of their assets at an affordable price.

“Within 12 months our joint teams developed a prototype and a reliable, scalable production device,” said Ran Grinshtain, ArrowSpot CEO. “This device has been tested and proven, and is now ready for mass production. We’re excited about this next phase of working together as it means that we can offer our clients and the market truly global 24/7 asset tracking.”

For instance, if cargo appears to be in the wrong location or if a reefer loses power, then this problem can be identified and dealt with rapidly, helping reduce any potential harmful impact on cargo.

“This capability is increasingly important within cold-chain scenarios and we are seeing a lot of demand for this kind of supply chain visibility worldwide,” said Grinshtain. “This contract is only the beginning with Astrocast too. Based on the demand that we are experiencing and forecasting, we expect additional purchase orders down the line, as we expect end-users’ traction in this space to continue to increase. Therefore, we’re starting to explore other use cases for asset tracking that we can tackle together too.”

Fabien Jordan, CEO of Astrocast, added: “Our satIoT technology and connectivity provides organisations with optimised data protocols, bidirectional communication options, and low energy consumption, all factors that are crucial to consider when developing and safeguarding an IoT business case. By working closely with ArrowSpot, our teams have developed a solution that has the capability to enable freight forwarders and cargo owners to track assets within containers around the world. We’re delighted to be working together and thank ArrowSpot for selecting us as its satIoT partner. Our joint innovation will enhance supply chain visibility and transparency globally.”

Astrocast operates a global nanosatellite IoT network, offering services in industries such as agriculture and livestock, maritime, environment and utilities. The network lets companies monitor, track and communicate with remote assets from anywhere in the world. It relies on L-band spectrum through an alliance with Thuraya. In partnership with Airbus, CEA/LETI and ESA, Astrocast developed Astronode S, a low-power and miniaturised module compatible with inexpensive L-band patch antennas. Founded in 2014, Astrocast develops and tests all its products in-house, from the satellites to the modules.

ArrowSpot provides the worldwide supply chain logistics industry with online information for safe and secure sensitive chilled cargo and high-value cargo. It operates a round-the-clock control centre to ensure expensive cargo is being controlled during long distance transportation. Business in the pharmaceutical, medical and food industries are increasingly relying on such online management systems.