COM DEV and GateHouse Announce Alliance to Bring Space-Based AIS Data Services to Global Maritime Community



    CAMBRIDGE, ON, and NR. SUNDBY, Denmark, Nov. 12 /CNW/ - COM DEV
International Ltd. (TSX: CDV), Canada's leading manufacturer of space hardware
subsystems and GateHouse A/S of Aalborg, Denmark, announced today, the signing
of a strategic alliance agreement to combine their respective skills and
capabilities to enable COM DEV's space-based AIS (Automatic Identification
System) data to be collected, stored, managed and displayed thus providing a
global turnkey AIS solution for a range of user groups.
    Global AIS coverage, which can be achieved from space, will extend the
reach and utility of the existing AIS infrastructure. COM DEV is focused on
developing an end to end system capability, which will support four key
maritime areas - Search and Rescue, Environmental Monitoring and Protection,
Vessel Traffic Management and Maritime Surveillance.
    Current AIS solutions have limited physical coverage and generally, AIS
ship to ship and ship to shore communications is restricted to 50 nautical
miles. AIS coverage from space enables detection and collection of AIS data
from a vessel at any point on the Earth.
    GateHouse A/S is a world leader in application and analysis software for
processing AIS data currently transmitted by over 68,000 ocean going ships.
The company provides its renowned AIS systems to maritime authorities,
governments and port authorities around the world and is working within the
International Maritime Organization's (IMO) Long-Range Identification and
Tracking (LRIT) Project. The firm also has expertise in satellite
communication protocols and application software.
    According to Michael Bondo Andersen, CEO of GateHouse, "GateHouse
believes that AIS received from space is going to increase Maritime Domain
Awareness significantly, increase maritime safety and security and, not least,
improve global environmental protection. AIS from space will supplement other
technologies such as shore-based AIS, LRIT and radar monitoring and enable the
global community to reach a berth to berth vessel monitoring much similar to
what has been common for air traffic management for many years. GateHouse is
convinced that the professional and focused way COM DEV approaches the
space-based AIS market combined with the expertise of GateHouse within AIS
solutions and satellite communication, will provide new and existing
possibilities for governments around the world. We look forward to working
with COM DEV to achieve this."
    Under the new Alliance Agreement, GateHouse will supply a complete
software solution including display, archiving, historical reporting, user
authentication, web access and other core AIS functionality along with hosting
facilities for integrated data being produced by COM DEV's previously
announced air and space demonstration programs. The global shipping view that
will be created by the GateHouse software will be capable of being delivered
to and integrated with other display systems as well. GateHouse's AIS Control
and Monitoring Centre core is based on ghTrack(TM), which is a proven software
platform for tracking, monitoring and control, used by a large number of
coastal surveillance authorities worldwide.
    GateHouse's capability provides the end-user link required to enable full
use of the AIS data which is collected by COM DEV's space-based AIS payloads.
The combination of global AIS data combined with the world's leading AIS data
management system will provide solutions for a broad range of maritime
applications.
    As previously announced COM DEV is proceeding with aircraft and
spacecraft trials to validate the advanced AIS capability which will enable
global AIS coverage with a minimal number of spacecraft. Data from these
trials will also be stored, managed and displayed using GateHouse software.
COM DEV has received expressions of interest from a number of maritime
agencies around the world to evaluate the system capabilities for potential
operational use.
    Space-based AIS is highly complementary to other systems being deployed
around the world such as shore-based AIS base station deployments and the LRIT
initiative being led by the International Maritime Organization.
    The space-based system developed by COM DEV has the ability to manage the
large numbers of vessels visible from space that use AIS. In addition, the
system has the added ability to detect vessels which intentionally or
unintentionally transmit erroneous data. To ensure data security and
integrity, COM DEV's system approach ensures that all data is encrypted, and
will only be available for controlled distribution to authorized users
consistent with resolutions and policies established by the International
Maritime Organization.
    "Space-based collection of AIS data offers tremendous cost and
performance advantages and complements existing and planned methods of
monitoring marine traffic," said COM DEV CEO John Keating. "We are very
pleased to be allied with GateHouse in this exciting new venture. Both COM DEV
and GateHouse have been investing in complementary AIS-related technologies
for several years. This alliance brings together two global leaders and
enables us to provide a complete AIS solution that we believe has significant
market potential. Over the next year we anticipate entering into additional
partnerships and alliances with leading providers in the infrastructure and
services area as we continue to build out the capability to deliver this
global service solution."

    About COM DEV

    COM DEV International Ltd. (www.comdev.ca) is a leading global designer
and manufacturer of space hardware subsystems. With facilities in Canada, the
United Kingdom and the United States, COM DEV manufactures advanced products
and subsystems that are sold to major satellite prime contractors for use in
communications, space science, remote sensing and military satellites.

    About GateHouse

    GateHouse (www.gatehouse.dk) offers a large range of technical software
products - mainly within satellite communications and asset tracking (e.g.
surveillance of vessels) - and consultancy services ranging from full turnkey
operation of software development to specific test operations. In addition,
GateHouse is involved in the defence market. To ensure top quality and
continuous improvement in software development, GateHouse works in accordance
with CMMI and is ISO 9001:2000 certified.

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For further information:

For further information: COM DEV contacts: Gary Calhoun, Chief Financial
Officer, Tel: (519) 622-2300 ext. 2826, Fax: (519) 622-2158,
gary.calhoun@comdev.ca; Jeff Codispodi, The Equicom Group, Tel: (416) 815-0700
ext. 261, Fax: (416) 815-0080, jcodispodi@equicomgroup.com; For AIS
Information: ais.services@comdev.ca; GateHouse contact: Mette D. Lilkaer,
Marketing Coordinator, Tel: +45 7020 1909, Fax: +45 7020 1910, E-mail:
mdl@gatehouse.dk, www.gatehouse.dk

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