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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7 Summer 2015 Proceedings However, the 21 st century waterway is about more than just transmitting signals. Future navigation will leverage emerging technologies and integrate this information so the vast spectrum of waterway users can use it seamlessly. A 21 st century waterway integrates information presentation and delivery, incorporating all available data to provide the safest waterway design. It is our goal to shape the marine transportation system through integrated physical and electronic systems that will provide a safer, more effcient, and more resilient waterway. eATON One way we hope to modernize navigation informa- tion is via electronic aids to navigation or eATON. There are three types of eATON — virtual, synthetic, and physical. A virtual aid is an eATON that is transmitted to a specifc location where no physical aid to navigation exists; a synthetic aid is an eATON that is partnered with a physical aid to navigation and is broadcast to the assigned position of that physical aid; while a physical AIS eATON consists of an actual AIS transmitter physically located at the broadcast site. This technology can be placed in an environmentally or operationally restricted area and allows the Coast Guard to mark recent hazards and correct physical aid discrepancies. When a ship's AIS transceiver is integrated with other bridge navigational equipment, mariners can see eATON broadcasts on their radar and/or ECDIS, which provides timely navigation notifcation. Pilot Program During 2014, the Coast Guard began a pilot program in which we deployed eATONs in locations where we believe this new technology will best augment the existing physical aids to navigation system. For example, we established fve eATONs on the San Francisco Oakland Bay Bridge, marking each of the fve bridge abutments, making them much more visible on radar. Thus far, feedback on these eATONS is very posi- tive. Mariners report that the eATON better marks preferred traffc lanes and doesn't obscure small contacts in the center as the radar beacons some- times do. Notices to Mariners In addition to providing aids to navigation to help navigators determine their position and warn them of dangers and obstructions, the Coast Guard also The Bay Bridge The chart of San Francisco Bay, centered around the San Francisco Oakland Bay Bridge, shows four possible spans through which to transit, and the center of the three preferred spans are marked with a RACON on the chart. 1 If you look at the corresponding radar picture, the bridge abutments, while clearly visible on the chart, are not very clear on the radar. Further, the RACON emits the outstretched white signals from the bridge. As the RACON signal stretches out through the center of the channel, this may obscure any vessels transiting on the other side of the bridge. So we established fve eATON, depicted by the blue diamond symbols on the radar screen, marking each of the fve bridge abutments. Endnote: 1. See Radar screen shot courtesy of the San Francisco Bar Pilots.

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