The mobile operator Com4 is the first in the world to offer NB-IoT and LTE Cat M1 in the North Sea. The service is delivered through Tampnet’s 4G radio network which is now being upgraded to support the new radio technology.


The first two companies to make use of this technology are JB Group and Keystone, which deliver EX approved units in the North Sea through NB-IoT.


Stein André Larner, managing director of Com4, says this is a large and important step forward in the digitisation of the petroleum industry. In other words it is the beginning of an offshore digitisation revolution, he says.


More profitable and efficient

The oil companies are increasing their efficiency in order to ensure a more profitable operation, and the industry has therefore started digitising the processes and value chains. Jan Narve Bakken, managing director of JB Group, says that the unit they are about to start utilising will offer a whole range of new possibilities, including tracking, measuring of g-forces, vibrations, localisation, analysis and condition reports. The first units are to be applied by IKM for monitoring containers going to and from the North Sea.

– Thanks to Com4’s NB-IoT service in the North Sea and our tracking and condition monitoring module, the oil industry operation will become significantly more efficient, he says.


Unknown possibilities

Audun Schibevaag, managing partner in Keystone, which delivers a logistics platform for treatment, operation and monitoring of equipment, says that now is the first time it is possible to get cost-effective real-time updates from a tracking unit in an ATEX environment.

– Satellite communication has previously been used to a certain extent to track and localise equipment in the North Sea. This is a highly expensive solution with limited possibilies. With NB-IoT coverage in the North Sea, new and undreamt-of possibilities will present themselves when it comes to increasing efficiency, predictive analyses, tracking and following equipment in real time, he says.


Tampnet facilitates digitisation

Managing director in Tampnet, Per Helge Svensson, says that the NB-IoT and LTE Cat M1 network is tailor-made for wireless offshore communication.

– The network connects the platforms to land in a robust circle infrastructure. Through the NB-IoT technology, oil companies, service companies as well as machine and equipment manufacturers will be able to collect large amounts of data, which will in turn constitute the basis for important decisions, and for increasing the efficiency within drilling and production, he says.


NB-IoT is tailor-made for the offshore industry

NB-IoT offers several advantages in comparison with the current 4G network and satellite communication. The units can have a battery lifetime of up to 10 years, and the technology provides a significantly better coverage than today’s 4G mobile network. The hardware costs will be drastically reduced, which means that there will be possibilities in terms of creating new services within the offshore industry.

– The potential for the industry is enormous, and a lot will happen in this field during the next two years. This is just the beginning, and Com4 is experiencing a strong interest in their technology and competence in this field, Stein André Larner concludes.


For additional information, please contact:

Stein André Larner, managing director of Com4


Telephone: +47 47900777