The future of Vessel Traffic Management in Europe



Einar Lihovd, MarNIS, Project lead for Kongsberg Norcontrol IT, Horten, Norway


MarNIS – Maritime Navigation and Information Services – is an Integrated Research Project within the EU 6th Frame Work Programme, formed to further the use of advanced and future technology within E-Navigation. A four year project, MarNIS was initiated in November 2004 with a budget of €18.2m (€12m EC contribution) and has 44 partners and 12 subcontractors from 13 countries.

A vast breadth of knowledge and experience within the consortium comes from Ministr ies of Transport and Port Authorities, Professional organisations (Harbour masters, Pilots), Industry & IT companies, Universities & Research Institutes, from across Europe. These pan-European partners will be instrumental in bringing the use of advanced technologies to the forefront within Vessel Traffic Management systems (VTM). The technology focus of MarNIS includes:

• Automatic Identification System (AIS)

• Long Range Identification & Tracking (LRIT)

• Galileo (Position/Communications)

• Synthetic Aperture Radar/Side-looking Airborne Radar/Satellite based sensors

These technologies will be coalesced into one operator facing system, currently labelled the Maritime Operations Service (MOS) centre. The background of the MOS concept is varied but a major goal is to avert past disasters such as Braer/Erika/ Sea Empress/Prestige. Through use of new technology and the breadth of experience in the MarNIS consortium, it is predicted that a new, more pro-active rather than reactive VTM equivalent will avert such disasters. The intention is that a MOS operator(s) can view and utilise information from specialised services at one operator station, including: Coastal VTS, Oil Pollution Response, Search & Rescue and Maritime Assistance Services (MAS).

C-Scope User Interface

Kongsberg Norcontrol IT has been developing the interface and operator system that will form the front end of a MOS centre. The Kongsberg Norcontrol IT C-Scope User Interface software formed the platform for an in depth MOS demonstration, which was held at the MCA’s Highcliffe Training Centre on 13 & 14th Feb 2007. The event, attended by MarNIS members and stakeholders from all over Europe, demonstrated progress against a scenario set in 2012 and demonstrated many of the benefits of theMOS concept, such as:

• Identification of High Risk Vessels (HRV)

• Vessel Traffic Management in coastal waters

• Dynamic Routeing of vessels

• Electronic transfer of data from one authority to another

• Use of LRIT

• Combined monitoring of Search & Rescue (SAR) and OilPollution Response (OPR)

• Blending of existing SAR and OPR into a new MarNIS structure

• Use of resources to manage a marine incident

• Use of MOS for other public interest activities.

The MOS version of the C-Scope User Interface produces the Traffic Image via AIS, Radar and other sensors, including the forthcoming LRIT and Long Range Reporting (LRR). A key focus of the MOS concept is to create a pro-active service by introducing MarNIS Risk Areas (MaRA), which enable the operator – in the case of the demo, an MCA VTS operator based at a coastal MRCC – to set alarms when vessels enter certain predetermined areas.

Functionality of the integrated WMS includes:

• GetCapabilities

• Request sent by C-Scope to the WMS about what types of map layers, time spans, etc. that are provided

• The server gives back a list of map/chart layers provided, and C-Scope structures them into a user interface panel from which the user can choose.

• GetMap

• Request sent by C-Scope to the WMS for one or more of the provided map layers, with given time and coordinate span

• The server gives back a raster file (.png) with the map layer(s) that C-Scope will put transparently on top of the ENC.

• GetFeatureInfo

• Request sent by C-Scope to the WMS for detailed map/chart layer information at a given position on the ENC

• The server gives back the details that C-Scope will display in a separate window.

Cookie Policy. This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website.