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20th June 2016

Polar Ocean Challenge underway to highlight concerns over human impact on Arctic

The Polar Ocean Challenge, led by world famous explorer David Hempleman-Adams set sail from Bristol yesterday on a voyage to become the first ever British team to sail around the North Pole in one season.

The challenge, which will see the team cover over 13,500 nautical miles, aims to highlight the growing concern over human impact on the Arctic environment. Circumnavigating round the North Pole will specifically draw attention to the melting ice caps, with sea ice receding back so far during the summer months that vessels can now pass through, something that has not been possible in the past. As well shining a spotlight on the adverse effects of climate change, it is also an opportunity to highlight the need for responsible navigation of the Arctic in the future, as no doubt it will become a shipping route in years to come.

The route of the expedition will take the crew and their ice-breaking yacht from Bristol to Norway, then Northern Russia, through the North East Passage, onto Alaska and Northern Canada, along the North West Passage, Greenland and then finally back across the North Atlantic to Bristol. With potential for tough conditions and icebergs along the way it is not a journey for the faint hearted.

Alongside David Hempleman-Adams, the first Briton to walk solo and unsupported to the South Pole, the crew includes sailors with varying experience from different walks of life including experienced Artic skipper Captain Nikolai and 14 year old young explorer, Ben Edwards.

Satcom Global is actively following the challenge and will be reporting progress regularly on our Satcom Global Twitter page. We are supporting the efforts of the crew by providing Iridium satellite voice and data services. They will be using both Iridium Pilot and the handheld Iridium GO! device to report back on the expeditions’ progress and keep in touch with those on dry land.  Iridium is the only satellite network to provide reliable coverage in the Polar Regions.

For more information on the Polar Ocean Challenge or to see how you can support the fight against climate change and global warming please visit and

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Polar Ocean Challenge leaves Bristol
Drastic change in the future of the Arctic needs to be managed carefully & responsibly"
David Hempleman - Adams