National AIS Network
The Automatic Identification System(AIS) provides for transmission of ship’s Identity, type, position, course, speed, navigational ,status and other safty-related Information to the shore stations. Whenever vessel traffic Services (VIS) are set up, these Inputs essentially contribute to overall affective control and management.
With a view to putting the data transmitted by AIS to their best use, it is envisaged to set up a national AIS network with AIS Base stations located at suitable intervals along the entire coastline and provided with Radio data links. These links can be utilized to transmit the data to the nearest local authority, viz. ports, harbours, etc. Who should be interested in monitoring the vessel traffic in their respective jurisdictions. Such a national Aid network will also function as a safety related information service and extend assistance in search and rescue operations whenever necessary. With the international ship and port security code (ISPS) as promulgated by IMO, which has come into force since 1st July ,2004, the proposed AIS national network will go a long a way in its effective implementation all along the coastline of India.
The Indian lighthouse service whose supreme objective has been to provide increased navigational assistance to vessels of all descriptions plying in its water is constantly in pursuit of ways and means to achieve this goal.
AIS is a VHF transponder system capable of sending data such as ship’s identification, Position, Course, speed, etc to the shore as well as other ships. It is now a mandatory requirement for ships above 300 tonnes GRT.
In the ship-to-ship mode, AIS brings many benefits to the mariner. When the shore based VTS operator receives the AIS data, he correlates this identity with a radar track identified by RDF. As AIS data eliminates errors to a large extent, the authorities world over have now started integrating AIS with VTS.