Proceedings Of The Marine

SUM 2015

Proceedings magazine is a communication tool for the Coast Guard's Marine Safety & Security Council. Each quarterly magazine focuses on a specific theme of interest to the marine industry.

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40 Proceedings Summer 2015 Marine Exchange of Alaska, and other authorized agen- cies and organizations, have begun transmitting AIS ATON messages in several ports and waterways. 5 Satellite systems also collect AIS transmissions and provide them to autho- rized users; this is especially useful in deep ocean areas and other areas lacking shore-based transmission reception. Today's satellite communications providers have grown dramatically. They can offer a variety of data rate packages, and they can support navigational developments that were not available just a few years ago. Moreover, in some areas, mariner data rates are approaching those available for land- lubbers, but challenges remain for providing this level of service at sea. Industry efforts to address these challenges include IMO's Global Maritime Distress and Safety System modernization program, which the Radio Technical Commission for Mari- time Services supports. Why Do We Need Standards? Primarily, the Radio Technical Commission for Maritime Services develops standards for mari- time navigation and radio communication equip- ment and systems. These standards must meet many objectives, which is easier said than done. For example, standards developers must weigh advice from technologists, manufacturers, users, and reg- ulators to provide standards for user-friendly fea- tures, such as plug-and-play modularity, upgrade ease, and lower cost. These standards, in turn, fos- ter new approaches and encourage innovation. Traditionally, RTCM standards efforts for ship- board navigation and radio communication equip- ment and systems have focused on applying stan- dards for SOLAS-governed ships and non-SOLAS ships in domestic services. However, the U.S. vessel feet includes only about 200 SOLAS ships, approximately 22,000 non- SOLAS commercial ships, and more than 12 mil- lion recreational boats. 6 Future Technological Developments Fortunately, the RTCM e-Navigation Steering Committee and its group of special committees recognize that expanded focus. As such, while the special committees help develop standards for SOLAS ships and non-SOLAS commercial ships, the steering committee reviews modern communi- cations and computer technologies, such as Smart Chart AIS, for recreational boating and commercial vessel use. 7 Cybersecurity Wireless technology and the Internet's rapid growth allow ships to operate more efciently and enable e-Navigation and GMDSS modernization. Additionally, nearly all shipboard navigation and communications systems have an electronic interface that allow systems to "talk" to one another, passing information such as a ship's position. However, these interfaces typically use relatively old-fash- ioned technology, which raises security concerns. If cyber criminals can target major Internet-interconnected retailers, Internet-interconnected ships and systems can be just as vulnerable. Fortunately, industry partners are addressing this problem. For example, the International Electrotechnical Commis- sion is developing a new standard on safety and security for Ethernet interconnection, and the International Marine Elec- tronics Association is incorporating security into its Ethernet standard. Because AIS units are now directly interconnected with shipboard radars, and in many, if not most commercial ships, ECDIS as well, it is already possible for AIS base stations ashore to transmit navigation data directly to these systems for graph- ical presentation on their displays. Graphic courtesy of RTCM.

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