Worldwide there are approximately 3,000 merchant ports and the work of the Harbour Master can vary widely from country to country and from port to port even within the same country.
Aids to Navigation (AtoN) have evolved over time.
As new technology emerges, asset managers have a large range of options and features to consider. This document identifies how clever AtoN design and functionality can help authorities reduce operational costs and improve the visibility of their connected devices.
Aids to Navigation (AtoN) play a pivotal role in maritime safety and extend much further than being the traffic lights of the sea.
We are a long way from the days of a traditional lighthouse whose kerosene lamp served as a simple warning of danger ahead.
The navigational tools available to mariners today are vast and they continue to evolve as new technologies are realized.
Types of AtoN
Congestion within the world’s ports and shipping channels continues to grow, with the maritime industry relying on AtoN to ensure navigational safety and to manage traffic conditions.
AtoN types include:
These AtoN tools are critical in providing mariners with information that is precise and in real time.
They are best used in combination for validation and are often used to indicate current conditions, the position of other vessels and to provide warning of nearby risks and hazards.
Mariners have a responsibility to trust and abide by the information provided by these AtoN tools. In turn, AtoN managers have an obligation to ensure their assets are in good working order and are delivering accurate and reliable information.
Failure to comply with these obligations by either party poses a risk to navigational safety and can also lead to heavy financial penalties.
The Sealite White Paper can be downloaded here: www.sealite.com
A new Ship-Port Interface Guide in pdf format focusing on eight practical measures which can support GHG emission reduction at the ship-port interface was released by IMO on 26 March.
The document can be found here:
Developed by the Global Industry Alliance to Support Low Carbon Shipping (Low Carbon GIA) under the IMO-Norway GreenVoyage2050 Project, the Guide aims to support the maritime industry in achieving IMO’s emission reduction goals and contribute to greener shipping.
The eight practical measures presented in the Guide are:
1. Facilitate immobilisation in ports.
2. Facilitate hull and propeller cleaning in ports.
3. Facilitate simultaneous operations (simops) in ports.
4. Optimize port stay by pre-clearance.
5. Improve planning of ships calling at multiple berths in one port.
6. Improve ship/berth compatibility through improved Port Master Data.
7. Enable ship deadweight optimisation through improved Port Master Data.
8. Optimise speed between ports.
On 7 April the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) reported that multipurpose coastguard support via a remotely piloted surveillance system (RPAS) services had been provided at the request of the Romanian Border Police.
(See illustrations here from EMSA / Romanian authorities ©)
The RPAS system will support a number of authorities in Black Sea waters including the Romanian Naval Authority and National Agency for Fishing and Aquaculture.
It is understood that the mid-sized RPAS craft can stay in the air for up to seven hours and has a range of up to 200km. It is equipped with a camera capable of day and night operations, a sea surface scanner, a distress beacon detector and a sensor that can detect vessel positions. It can be used for a range of activities, including border control, monitoring naval traffic, search and rescue, and environmental protection. Data from the RPAS can be recorded and transferred to the EMSA RPAS data centre in real time, and then made immediately available to national authorities.