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CEL-FI GO Powers Cellular Connectivity for Offshore Oil Drilling Rigs


  • ExxonMobil’s fleet of offshore oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico suffered from poor cellular coverage.
  • Positioned roughly 20 miles off the coast, the massive platforms are far away from the nearest cellular towers, making it even more difficult to achieve a strong cellular signal.
  • Every rig needed boosted cellular reception, as workers use tablets that require cellular connectivity to communicate, take measurements, and perform other on-site duties.
  • The living quarters also needed improved cellular connectivity for voice and data coverage during the staff’s many days and nights on the platforms.


  • CEL-FI GO Smart Signal Booster


  • Each CEL-FI GO system was installed in less than one day and provided immediate, end-to-end AT&T and Verizon cellular coverage.
  • With the tablets connected to the boosted cellular signal, the crew performs all their responsibilities without any cellular issues.
  • Everybody on board enjoys reliable calling and high-speed data surfing from the living quarters.
  • In addition to being installed seamlessly alongside existing cabling and piping, the solution is network safe and does not interfere with the rig’s other communication systems.

The Challenge

Among the global leaders in energy and chemical manufacturing, ExxonMobil owns and operates a fleet of offshore drilling rigs in the Gulf of Mexico. Located roughly 20 miles off the coasts of Texas and Alabama, the rigs are home to large-scale, highly detailed operations that support the company’s oil business. The oil platforms range in size, but each one features a control room, landings, walkways as well as living quarters for the crew to stay overnight. Facilitating the on-site operations, employees rely on cellular-enabled tablets to manage projects, perform maintenance, and carry out other work-related responsibilities. However, because of offshore locations and long distances from cellular towers, strong cellular connectivity is hard to come by on the rigs. This is not only problematic for day-to-day tasks, but also for personal voice and data coverage in the living quarters. To improve the cellular reception on each platform, ExxonMobil was in search of cellular booster solutions that enable workers to communicate more effectively and use the tablets to their full potential.

The Solution

With the CEL-FI GO Smart Signal Booster, ExxonMobil was able to significantly increase cellular signal across each facility. Depending on the size of the rig, some platforms needed as little as two GO units, one donor antenna, and one server antenna to deliver end-to-end coverage, while larger platforms required additional GOs and antennas for a wider cellular footprint. Boosting up to 100 dB for 3G, 4G, and 5G, the GOs were split evenly between AT&T and Verizon models, offering enhanced coverage for both carriers on the rigs. To ensure the strongest connection, installers used the CEL-FI WAVE’s antenna positioning functionality to determine the best direction for the donor antennas. As for server antennas, the number of antennas was dependent on the number of levels on the rig with one server antenna per floor. Altogether, the CEL-FI GO systems provide impressive, front-to-back cellular signal gain everywhere on the platforms. Plus, the solutions are NEMA 4-rated for water, dust, and dirt resistance, designed to self-organize, and do not interfere with other wireless products or transmission signals.

The Result

Offering simple and versatile installation options, each CEL-FI GO system took less than one day to install. Once powered on, the solutions boosted the cellular signal across the rigs within minutes. With this added level of cellular connectivity, the on-site AT&T and Verizon cellular devices perform without any cellular limitations, enabling staff to more efficient. Not only do work-related applications, programs, and software work seamlessly with the cellular signal boost, but also employees can use mobile devices and the strong signal to communicate immediately from anywhere on the platform. Those on board now also enjoy strong signal reception in the living quarters to make calls or go online in their free time.

Contact us today to help with your Cellular Coverage Problems

This CEL-FI installation was undertaken by our partners, in which CEL-FI has a global footprint in almost 100 countries. For a referral to a local expert in your area, please contact us via phone or email.