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In recent years, mariners have turned to Google Earth and unauthorized charting programs on their laptop to obtain the waypoints needed to calculate basic distances and fuel usage figures.but wouldn’t it be simpler and safer to ‘borrow’ actual charts for initial voyage planning?The IHO has also addressed concerns from the shipping industry about the high number of alarms emanating from ecdis, which were so frequent that they were ignored by bridge crew.This meant that important safety alarms, which could prevent ship groundings, were also being ignored.Transas thinks so and recently announced a new ‘Pay As You Sail’ chart solution for Electronic Navigational Charts.The announcement comes after succesful sea trials and verification by Det Norske Veritas (DNV).One of the frustrations of planning voyages to new ports is obtaining charts.To reduce costs and also to avoid having to correct old charts, shipping companies often don’t purchase the needed charts until just before departing to a new port and this limits the navigator’s ability to prepare for the voyage.
Shipowners will also need to train navigators on a new ecdis or new software.
The new IHO standards were published in August 2015.
They include version 4.0 of S-52, which specifies chart content on ecdis as a new presentation library, S-63 – an updated protection standard – and S-64, which is a new test data set.
Some manufacturers, such as Transas, have announced that they are ready with type approved systems and software updates to ensure their systems meet the requirements. The IHO has introduced new standards for presenting electronic navigational charts (ENCs) on ecdis.
These were introduced to address the problem of anomalies on ENCs and the different approaches that ecdis systems use to display the charts.
The chairman of IHO’s ENC working group, Tom Mellor, said the updated S-52 standard will deliver new functions on ecdis.