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SART S.701
SeaTraceR AIS B
AIS Identifier
S.715 SkyTraceR


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AIS in brief ...   (Automatic Identification System - also known as Universal Automatic Identification System)

AIS Class A equipment has been a mandatory fit to the larger SOLAS deep-sea vessels since 2004, following its specification just a few years earlier. Each unit contains a VHF modem and GPS receiver, and a simple display, and is capable of transmitting and receiving bursts of data including the vessel ID, position, course, speed, etc. Data received in this way can then be displayed by Harbour Authorities, Coastguards, and other vessels, on bespoke displays or overlaid onto charts or radar displays. It is an automated system so requires no manual intervention. And it is a truly global system, with the FCC having resolved a licensing dispute over North American use of AIS frequency 87-B.

The benefits for the vessel are two-fold. By transmitting your identity and position to local traffic on a regular basis, it makes sure they know you are there, and can take avoiding action if needed. And receiving this information from vessels in the vicinity means you know their course, speed, rate of turn etc and can take appropriate action yourself. And of course their identity,  MMSI and radio call sign are displayed, so it is easy to make radio contact if needed. And then there are the enormous advantages for those concerned with vessel traffic services (VTS), anti-smuggling, anti-piracy and homeland security operations.

AIS Class B, Receivers and more...
Of course, an efficient AIS system depends on vessels being equipped with AIS equipment. Thankfully, the vast majority of deep sea vessels and passenger vessels are now equipped with Class A systems. But as ever, it is impractical to burden smaller craft with the same expensive, powerful equipment as fitted to vast container ships and bulk carriers. A handful of lower-cost
high-spec AIS Receivers such as our 2RxPRO are now available - these will warn YOU that a vessel is in your vicinity, but will NOT warn the other vessel that YOU are there (losing the two-way advantage of the transponder).  AIS Class B was specified precisely to fill this gap - as a much less expensive, limited range and limited feature sub-set of the original Class A units. AIS Class B transceivers, such as our very popular SeaTraceR, integrate seamlessly with the established existing Class A systems and equipment. As well as selling well into the leisure market, the SeaTraceR has found many roles in the workboat and offshore markets, and is part of several mandatory fits around the globe. Our heavily-ruggedised EHB version is doing valiant service in pipe-laying operations in several oceans. And our AIS Identifier heralds another breakthrough in low cost monitoring of smaller assets, fishing fleets, etc

  Land-based AIS networks are rapidly covering the busiest coastal regions, but one of the best known is AISLive. A joint venture between Lloyd's Register/Fairplay of the UK and HITT Group of the Netherlands, it allows subscribers to view Global AIS data in near real time
. In order to subscribe, companies and organisations are required to provide details of their activities within the maritime sector together with full contact information.  AISLive reserves the right to refuse access to the Industry service to any party. As well as real-time vessel information, the industry service offers ship search, arrival/departure notification (trigger) and alert facilities. There are now several competing AIS viewing networks, some of which are free to use.

And in the last year a number of satellites have shown that AIS data can be collected over wide areas, and this market segment will undoubtedly grow.


All information SevenStar Electronics Ltd 2002-18