Spire Partners with Pole Star to Illuminate Dark Waters and Improve Search and Rescue Operations

Pole Star partnered with Spire to improve visibility in dangerous waters in support of search and rescue (SAR) and safety of life missions for a branch of the U.S. military.

Pole Star logo

Pole Star is a company of maritime experts around the globe committed to ensuring the myriad needs of governments and businesses across the supply chain are met.

Spire is supporting Pole Star’s development of innovative technologies for real-time decision making in search and rescue and safety of life operations, improving overall maritime operations for one of the six branches of the United States Armed Forces.

Enhanced maritime data strengthens international cooperation

Thousands of ships have receivers that can interface with both terrestrial and satellite antennas. Spire has exploited this by developing Enhanced Satellite AIS, which has increased global position updates by 17 percent and addressed the challenge posed by tracking vessels in high traffic areas such as the South China Sea and Northern Sea Route. Enhanced Satellite AIS has also decreased delays in receiving data in high-traffic zones from several hours to just 15 minutes. These improvements are critical to search and rescue operations, as SAR teams do not have hours to wait to receive accurate information in order to save lives.

Spire’s constellation of nanosatellites has unmatched coverage in the polar regions where rough waters and limited data are the norm. The United States has considerable political, national security, environmental, socioeconomic, and other interests in the region. Spire’s unique Arctic insights in combination with Pole Star’s data visualization software can help the U.S. military become a stronger strategic partner in international SAR cooperation norms outlined by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Convention on International Civil Aviation (Annex 12 – Search and Rescue), International Convention on Maritime Search and Rescue, International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, and the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.

Mission critical maritime data services

This collaborative effort originated with Spire providing solely satellite-based AIS data for 70 degrees North and above (the Arctic region) to now providing global AIS data. Spire provides satellite, terrestrial, and Enhanced Satellite AIS to Pole Star to assist in providing critical maritime data services to government agencies and meet growing mission needs.


“Spire Global is becoming an industry standard in the maritime industry. This effort is a big step towards cementing that. Both Pole Star and Spire have complementary technologies, and together we can provide cutting-edge services and systems in the maritime space.”

Ben Minichino
President of Pole Star USA

Share on LinkedIn

Solution – Illuminating dark waters in polar and remote regions


tracking icon

Search and Rescue Support

Spire AIS data provides SAR and safety of life operations support; AIS data is a critical input for triangulation of distressed personnel or vessel location.

surface data icon

Polar-Specific Insight

Spire AIS offers deep insights into areas that are difficult to cover with terrestrial AIS, such as Alaska and the Arctic region, as well as open ocean and coastal zones.

ais data icon

Unmatched Coverage in HTZs

Spire’s unique Dynamic™ AIS solution provides coverage in notoriously difficult High Traffic Zones (HTZs) near busy ports and waterways around the world.

Results – From mission critical to mission accomplished

Pole Star immediately began implementing our supportive solution and the end customer has improved maritime insights for safety of life operations in real-time. (See image below).

Ship tracking info map


Download now:

More Case Studies