Kongsberg Maritime Launches Type-Approved GPS Compass

Tuesday, September 23, 2003
The new Seapath 20 GPS Compass from Kongsberg Seatex has achieved IMO type approval from DNV, Norway as THD (Transmitting Heading Device) using GNSS principle. The Seapath 20 replaces several vessel instruments with one compact navigation package (gyrocompass, GPS system, speed log and rate-of-turn indicator) that outputs heading, position, velocity and rate-of-turn, together with 1-second time pulse (1PPS) for synchronization of other survey systems. The product comprises three components, a Sensor Unit, a Processing Unit and a Display Unit. The Sensor Unit contains two GPS sensors and an inertial sensor device. The Processing Unit contains the main CPU, a number of individually configurable RS-232 or 422 output serial lines and Ethernet. The Display Unit provides an LCD screen for navigation information and push buttons for user control and command. The precise heading information is not effected by the latitude and vessel dynamics as with traditional gyrocompasses. Heading is derived from the fixed-distance dual GPS antenna arrangement in the Sensor Unit based on advanced phase measurements. The inertial sensor device in the Sensor Unit provides yaw information. In case of short GPS outages, the inertial sensor automatically takes over as the prime source for heading determination until the GPS signals become reliable again. Working together seamlessly, the inertial and GPS components of the Seapath 20 ensure accurate, continuous and robust heading information. The Seapath 20 offers the market a high precision GPS compass providing an accuracy in heading of 0.3° and up to 20 Hz update rate of heading, position and rate of turn.

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