One of the emerging components of VTS systems in recent years is Automatic Identification System (AIS). AIS uses transponders which operate in the VHF maritime radio band and are capable of sending information such as vessel identification, positions, heading, vessel length and hazardous cargo information to other vessels and land-based stations via a digital data link. AIS information is used for collision avoidance and for maritime authorities to track and monitor vessel movements.
AIS Class A has been mandated by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) for vessels of 300 gross tonnage and upwards engaged on international voyages, cargo ships of 500 gross tonnage and upwards not engaged on international voyages, as well as passenger ships (more than 12 passengers), irrespective of size. AIS Traffic can be displayed in real time onto Electronic Chart Systems and alarms can be configured based on availability and status.
As an early champion of AIS, AMS has participated in standards committees and worked with early technology adapters, from the initial planning stage to network implementation. AMS has installed a number of AIS transponders on the Australian coast, some integrated with coastal radars, some with Port Vessel Traffic Services (VTS) display capability and others as direct data feed into remote VTS systems. In addition AMS has designed and installed comprehensive AIS systems for clients worldwide including Turkey, Canada and Papua New Guinea. This gives AMS a level of current VTS practical experience that is second to none in world.
AMS also works closely with the Australian Maritime Safety Authority who has a tutorial available for more information on AIS:
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