The article discusses the main functions of the Vessel Monitoring System, its composition and the tasks performed by its constituent elements.


Objectives of the Vessel Monitoring System

Marine Monitoring System are used all over the world by Ministries of Transport, Border Guards, Ministries of the Interior, and large government and commercial companies.

Such systems are being created for the following purposes:

  1. Ensuring the safety of navigation;
  2. Improving the efficiency of search and rescue operations;
  3. Improvement of information support for the prevention and elimination of the consequences of emergencies at sea;
  4. Information support during the analysis of abnormal and emergency situations with ships;
  5. Providing information on the whereabouts of ships to shipowners.


Functions of the Vessel Monitoring System

  • Tracking the location of vessels equipped with GNSS receivers in real time without the participation of the ship operator;
  • Providing the dispatcher with information about the position of vessels with reference to electronic charts;
  • Mutual identification of ships;
  • Automated information exchange through various channels;
  • Distribution of notices to skippers, allowing automatic translation of electronic notices into 24 European languages;
  • Sending broadcast circular messages to ships;
  • Automatic reception of signals from the ship security alert system;
  • Tracking the history of the vessel's movement for a specified period of time.


If appropriate, it is possible to expand or narrow the functionality by developing a specific project for the assigned tasks.


Composition of the vessel monitoring system


The monitoring system of sea and river vessels contains a monitoring center, which includes an automated workstation, mobile satellite and / or onboard communication networks, the Internet, onboard navigation and communication systems. 

Automated workstation of the dispatcher


The automated workstation of the dispatcher's dispatcher (AWP) is connected to the on-board navigation and communication systems via mobile satellite and / or terrestrial communication networks and the Internet. AWP can be located directly at the coastal infrastructure facilities of the Vessel Monitoring System, in situational centers, in specialized monitoring centers for power structures. AWP implies the work of employees performing the role of a dispatcher and constantly monitoring the incoming information, its distribution and application. 

  • vehicle monitoring;
  • control over the system performance and correct reception / processing / indication of information;
  • communication with vehicles via established communication channels;
  • receiving distress signals and notifications about emergency situations;
  • issuing recommendations to vehicles;
  • distribution of notices to skippers;
  • organization of search and search activities;
  • recording of incoming information;
  • timely informing the authorized bodies about incidents, etc .;

  • monitoring the water area for the presence of oil spills, the appearance of ice and other factors affecting the safety of navigation;
  • monitoring the performance of the onboard elements of the system;
  • control of radio air in the area of ​​responsibility, etc.
  • Data received from watercraft
  • dynamic: ship position, speed, current state, course, course, etc .;
  • static: ship name, IMO number, MMSI number, dimensions, flag, etc.

On the basis of the data received from the vessel, a dynamic picture is formed at the automated workplace in the area of ​​responsibility of the AWP, and it is transmitted further through the communication channels. On the basis of this data, management decisions can be made or an analysis of the necessary episode can be carried out.

Onboard navigation and communication complex

Each onboard navigation and communication complex has an identification number. Such a complex is used to automatically detect malfunctions, collect information from sensors and transmit the indicated parameters along with an identification number to the monitoring center.

Complex components 

- GLONASS / GPS receiver;

- navigation and communication unit, which includes transceivers of satellite or terrestrial communication systems.


The complex is installed directly on the transport elements of the infrastructure: the more facilities are equipped with this equipment, the more and better the direct monitoring of ships will take place. 
The on-board navigation and communication complex can interact with another of the same complex, bypassing the central monitoring system, in areas where there is no coverage by communication with the central control room. This opportunity significantly increases the safety of navigation, as the traffic participants receive maximum information about the actions of other traffic participants around them.

Complex functions

  • sending in automatic mode of distress signals;
  • informing about emergency situations;
  • communication with vehicles;
    receiving recommendations from the central management of watercraft traffic, notifications and other messages;
  • recording of incoming information;
  • automatic transmission of information about the vehicle to all subscribers in the area of ​​operation, etc.