NewSat snares Wheatstone satellite comms

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NewSat snares Wheatstone satellite comms
The offshore portion of Wheatstone LNG (Credit: Chevron Australia).

Big chunk of offshore deal for liquefied natural gas project.

Satellite operator NewSat has scooped an $8.32 million subcontract to deliver communications services and hardware for Chevron's massive Wheatstone liquefied natural gas project off Western Australia.

The contract (pdf) includes high-speed satellite links between Chevron's Perth office, the Wheatstone offshore platform and an LNG production facility located at Onslow.

BAE Systems Australia is handling telecommunications integration works for the Wheatstone offshore gas processing platform on behalf of the platform builder, Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Services.

BAE has a broad remit including "detailed design, supply and test of integrated data, voice, satellite, radio, public address/alarm, radar, meteorological, entertainment and video conferencing systems".

The portion of the contract awarded to NewSat is substantial. BAE said in February that its total telecommunications contract is valued at "over $US10 million".

The chunk subcontracted to NewSat is valued at $US8.59 million ($AU8.32 million).

NewSat will supply hardware as well as satellite communications services from its Perth-based 'teleport' — the ground station and location of NewSat's antennas.

NewSat chief executive Adrian Ballintine said the deal was its "largest single teleport contract to date".

He said that NewSat had "been working with a range of" partners to secure work on the Wheatstone project, including the eventual contract winner, BAE Systems.

While BAE Systems has control of the offshore portion of Wheatstone's communications network, Bechtel controls the mainland portion of the network. Bechtel subcontracted that work to Alcatel-Lucent in January this year.

NewSat is no stranger to Chevron Australia sites, also providing satellite connectivity in conjunction with another partner, Amstar, to the Gorgon LNG project off Western Australia.

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