Ship location question

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio General Discussion' started by Tony, Mar 2, 2017.

  1. Tony

    Tony Moderator Staff Member

    Here's a question that I presume Jeremy will be able to answer

    I tripped across a web site, , that shows ship positions as an aid for other ships, and even pleasure craft.

    Didn't I read here that companies don't want APRS used so their position is not revealed for safety? How does that square with the use of Automatic Identification System?
  2. Jeremy

    Jeremy Active Member

    AIS uses the marine VHF band for position and messaging. It is very similar to APRS in function, but slightly different in form. In any case, to answer Tony's question, the use of AIS as a safety measure outweighs the security concerns. It is also has an economic angle, as the brokers track the location of different kinds of ships to see where they are.

    The use of AIS by commercial ships, and its IGating to the internet is why I felt comfortable broadcasting my HF APRS beacons on my former ship; except when in piracy areas, where many ships secure their AIS out of an abundance of caution. My current ship is under charter by the USN and they want our AIS use to be fairly limited. In response to that policy, I don't broadcast position data from this ship while underway. I will however, use the messaging function as it does not reveal my position.

  3. Tony

    Tony Moderator Staff Member

    Ah, Ok. Thanks, Jeremy. You changed ships. I thought you were still on the old one and that the company changed policy.

    And the navy has to contract ships. Don't they have enough of their own? :)

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