Photograph of ships at the docks with digital graphics overlayed to demonstrate IoT remote control connectivity

IoT remote control to manage assets

23/2/23 | 5 minute read

As the world becomes more connected and reliant on technology, the Internet of Things (IoT) has emerged as a powerful tool for managing assets through remote control. IoT devices allow companies to collect data, monitor performance, and control assets from virtually anywhere across the globe.

IoT revolutionises the way businesses operate and allows them to become more efficient and cost-effective. For companies operating in remote, isolated or harsh environments, such as those in the maritime, oil and gas, or mining industries, having reliable and secure communication links is essential.

Without a strong connection, managing IoT devices remotely can become extremely difficult, if not impossible. This is where a trusted satellite communications service provider come in. Satellite connectivity enables companies to manage their IoT assets in real-time, even when they are located in areas with limited or no terrestrial connectivity.

If you’re part of a sector that AST Networks provides satellite services for, then you most likely have come across IoT asset management at some point. But for those readers who haven’t, please see the IoT overview below.

Overview of the Internet of Things (IoT)

Digitalised photograph of woman’s hand outstretched with images of various graphs and tables to demonstrate the data exchange of IoT

The Internet of Things (IoT) refers to the growing network of physical devices, vehicles, home appliances, and other items embedded with electronics and software. As long as these devices can connect to either a network, or each-other, they fall under the IoT umbrella. Through these connections, devices and assets can exchange data.

An IoT ecosystem comprises of connected devices that are able to collect, transmit, and act on data in real-time, making them a valuable tool for companies who rely on high-performing operational assets. Through the use of IoT devices or assets and satellite communications, companies can improve operational efficiency, reduce costs, and minimise the risk of human error.

Glossary of IoT terms

  • Devices/Assets: Physical devices or assets that are equipped with sensors, software, and are connected via the internet. These devices can range from industrial machines in a factory to an autonomous vessel at sea.
  • Sensors: Devices or assets are equipped with sensors that gather data from the environment, such as temperature, humidity, and other information. This data is then sent to the next component in the IoT process.
  • Connectivity: The devices are connected to the internet, which allows them to communicate with other devices and with central servers. This communication can be done using a reliable satellite connection.
  • Data Processing: The data collected by the devices is sent to central servers, where it is processed, analysed, and stored. This data can then be used to make decisions, control other devices, or trigger specific actions.
  • Applications and Analytics: The data processed by the central servers can then be accessed and analysed by various applications, such as mobile apps or web-based dashboards. This allows the data to be used for a variety of purposes, such as energy management or planned maintenance.
  • Actuation: Based on the analysis of the data, specific actions can be taken by the devices or other systems. For example, an offshore power generator can be automatically switched off if any issues arise, such as a malfunction with the hardware.

In summary, the IoT is a system of interconnected devices that communicate with each other and with central servers to gather and analyse data, and then act on that data to make pre-programmed decisions, such as taking control of a certain asset.

Importance of IoT for companies operating in remote or harsh environments


In remote or harsh environments, traditional forms of communication and asset management can be challenging due to an absence of terrestrial infrastructure. This can result in a lack of real-time information, which can negatively impact a company's operations. With IoT remote control in place connecting devices over a reliable satellite service, companies can overcome these challenges and gain access to valuable data and insights.

IoT remote control capabilities can help enhance the safety of business operations too. There is less or no requirement to send in teams to collect data and maintain assets. Remote and harsh environments can present real dangers such as extreme weather conditions or temperatures.

In addition to asset management, IoT can also support a number of functions including:

  • Live data acquisition for asset performance software
  • Dashboard with API feeds from client software
  • Monitoring fuel emissions / bunker monitoring
  • Weather routing and vessel optimisation
  • Integration of 4G comms onshore/offshore
  • Data aggregation for performance monitoring / comparison with fleet
  • CCTV / voyage data recorder integration
  • Container monitoring

Using satellite communications services for IoT assets


Because IoT requires assets to be connected, it’s essential a robust and reliable satellite network is available. Satellite communications offer secure and reliable communication links, which is crucial for companies that are managing critical assets. For example, a mining company will need to make sure their equipment and machinery are in optimum working condition, as well as being safe to use.

Data transmitted via satellite is encrypted and protected, ensuring that confidential information remains secure. Additionally, satellite communications provide global coverage, so companies can monitor and control their assets from anywhere in the world.

Using remote control to manage IoT assets provides a powerful platform for companies operating in remote or harsh environments. Satellite communications services provide the reliable and secure communication links that companies need to manage their assets efficiently and effectively.

By leveraging the power of IoT and satellite communications, companies can optimise their operations, reduce costs, and minimise the risk of human error.

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