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ShipPlotter Fanatics are all over the UK :-)

If you have read up on AIS including posts here on this blog you may recall that AIS uses very short bursts of high speed data on two VHF channels in the marine band. The two frequencies used are 161.975 (Marine ch 87) and 162.025 (ch 88) MHz. Ships broadcast their identity, position, course, speed and destination so that other ships can take account of their movements.

Liverpool AISUsing a low cost radio scanner tuned to one or other of these channels and ShipPlotter software running on your PC, you will be able to see a radar-like real-time map of all the large ships manoeuvering in your area together with information about their destination, estimated time of arrival and even the dimensions of each vessel.

ShipPlotter decodes the AIS digital signals from each ship using the sound card in your PC. You need a suitable VHF band radio receiver tuned to one of the two AIS channels. The program decodes the received digital data and displays it in a variety of formats.

Well it seems I had forgotten about the AIS site that is run by a group of “ShipPlotter” enthusiasts. The ShipAIS site has a strong focus on the Liverpool and Irish sea area..but there are enthusiasts all over the place! and so an entire map of the UK can be derived showing ship movements all around the UK coast.

Ellandess AISUsing this site you can even search for specific boats. Take the newly launched super yacht Elandess for example …here you can see it leaving the UK waters heading for Gibraltar on 13 Sept – at full speed of 16Kts.



There is an interesting forum attached to this site too…have a look at. http://forum.shipais.com/ which has plenty of AIS related debate, links and photos too.


2 comments to ShipPlotter Fanatics are all over the UK :-)

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