Saab-Backed Satellite Ymir-1 Launches to Revolutionize Maritime Communication

Saab-Backed Satellite Ymir-1 Launches to Revolutionize Maritime Communication

(IN BRIEF) On November 11th, the Ymir-1 satellite, equipped with technology from Saab, was successfully launched aboard SpaceX Falcon 9, ushering in a transformative era in maritime communication. Ymir-1 serves as a test satellite and a crucial component in the evolution of the Automatic Identification System (AIS), which ships use to communicate vital data like position and course. Saab TransponderTech, a leading AIS transponder manufacturer, has developed an advanced transponder embedded in the satellite. As maritime traffic continues to grow, AIS is poised to transition to the VHF Data Exchange System (VDES), offering enhanced capacity and secure two-way communication via satellites, ensuring global coverage. This satellite launch signifies Saab’s commitment to innovation and space technology investment, with the project being a collaborative effort involving Saab, AAC Clyde Space, and ORBCOMM within the AOS consortium, set to continue through 2024.

(PRESS RELEASE) STOCKHOLM, 13-Nov-2023 — /EuropaWire/ — Ymir-1, a satellite equipped with technology from Saab, was launched into space on 11 November onboard SpaceX Falcon 9. This marks a new era within maritime communication.

Ymir-1 is a test satellite and part of the development of the next generation of the Automatic Identification System (AIS), a system used by ships to communicate position, speed, course, and other data. AIS is a requirement for all larger ships and boats in civilian traffic. Saab TransponderTech is a leading manufacturer of AIS transponders and has built the advanced transponder onboard the satellite.

“Saab’s focus is innovation and to be at the forefront of technology. By using the space domain, we can strengthen and improve already existing products in our portfolio. The satellite launch is an important step in our investment in space and demonstrates our ability to utilise available Saab technology to, together with our partners, create new, unique space applications,” says Christian Hedelin, Chief Strategy Officer at Saab.

Due to the increasing number of ships at sea, AIS will be upgraded to a new technology known as VDES (VHF Data Exchange System). With VDES, capacity will significantly increase, and there will be the possibility of secure two-way communication via satellites, providing global coverage compared to today’s systems which are limited to coastal communication.

In the long run, the new navigation and communication system, VDES, will link land, sea, air, and space by combining advanced transponders with modern software and satellites.

The Swedish-built satellite Ymir-1 is a tool for research and development, developed in collaboration between Saab, AAC Clyde Space, and ORBCOMM within the AOS consortium. The project will continue throughout 2024.

For more information

Saab is a leading defence and security company with an enduring mission, to help nations keep their people and society safe. Empowered by its 20,000 talented people, Saab constantly pushes the boundaries of technology to create a safer, more sustainable and more equitable world. Saab designs, manufactures and maintains advanced systems in aeronautics, weapons, command and control, sensors and underwater systems. Saab is headquartered in Sweden. It has major operations all over the world and is part of the domestic defence capability of several nations.

Media Contact:

Saab Press Centre
+46 (0)734 180 018



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