Marine Link
Thursday, May 24, 2018

Regional Route Sharing Introduced in Baltic Sea

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

January 22, 2018

VTS centres receive route information via radio contact and will then have to either plot it into their own system or not. With the new integration scheme, they can receive a full visualization instantly. Map: EfficienSea2

VTS centres receive route information via radio contact and will then have to either plot it into their own system or not. With the new integration scheme, they can receive a full visualization instantly. Map: EfficienSea2

 Maritime digitalization carried out in the European project EfficienSea2 has enabled effective route sharing between different VTS systems in the Baltic Sea. 

 
It has the potential to drastically cut the reporting effort for the ship’s crew, while offering authorities a better ability to ensure safe traffic at sea.
 
The days may soon be over when mariners have to pick up a radio to take on the cumbersome task of reporting their vessel and route parameters every time they cross into a new VTS area – at least for those sailing in the Baltic Sea.
 
By cooperating with the Finnish Transport Agency as a part of the EU-funded project EfficienSea2, the Norwegian surveillance system manufacturer Vissim has become the first operator to integrate voyage data from the so-called ENSI-system (Enhanced Navigation Support Information) in their own vessel traffic monitoring system.
 
This ability, explains Max Semenov, Chief Technical Officer at Vissim, will allow VTS centres and navigators to drastically reduce their reporting burdens: “Today, a ship sailing from Helsinki to Oslo passes many VTS zones and has to share voyage data with all of them. Some require more than others, but in most cases some form of radio contact is necessary. Being able to integrate voyage information from a different route reporting scheme and distribute the information to all relevant actors along the route will make it possible to report only once per voyage,” he says.
 
The ENSI system has been developed in Finland and allows ships in the Baltic Sea to share their electronic route plan and the mandatory reports needed for the voyage with any VTS or SRS system using it. The ship will shortly thereafter receive feedback on safety issues, weather conditions and so forth from automated sources.
 
At first, the ability to integrate is directly beneficial for the part of the Baltic Sea Region covered by both ENSI and Vissim, but more important is the ambition of the EfficienSea2 project to have a global impact. By demonstrating how such route-sharing capabilities can be developed between different systems, EfficienSea2 hopes to lay the groundwork for future efforts toward smarter navigation.
 
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