Major UK Port Unveils Ship Tracking Upgrade

Radar technology at Dover Port

Cambridge Pixel, leaders in radar technology development, has supplied its SPx Server for radar video tracking and distribution, and its SPx library for display of scan converted radar video to Marico Marine as part of a major investment by the Port of Dover into safety systems.

Marico Marine aims to integrate the software-based radar tracker with its new vessel traffic service (VTS) system in Dover, a crucial gateway for UK-EU trade.  

The SPx radar tracker is a software-based COTS primary radar data extractor and target tracker.

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According to the company, the tracker can work seamlessly with a range of proprietary radars including those from Raytheon, Saab Sensis, Kelvin Hughes, JRC, Blighter Surveillance, Furuno Electric, Simrad, Sperry Marine, Koden, Navtech Radar and Terma.

“The company’s extensive experience of working with different radars, such as the Terma 2202 and Simrad Halo-6 for this project, has been a key factor in us getting the VTS system installed, configured and fully operational so quickly,” said Martin Harvey, project engineer at Marico Marine.

The technology features plot merging capability to combine multiple echoes from large vessel reflections into single plots. It supports both multi-model and multi-hypothesis tracking to improve efficiency and reduce nuisance alarms.

The SPx Server interfaces to the radars using proprietary network connections and accepts input from an AIS receiver to display both the primary and AIS tracks together. It also provides high quality radar video pre-processing in order to optimise tracking performance.

David Johnson, CEO, Cambridge Pixel, also commented:“The radars with our trackers and display software will link to CCTV cameras to give Port Control Officers greater ability to track, target, and record and intercept vessels navigating dangerously.”

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