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AIS Dynamic data and Static Information

The AIS system input data includes : Dynamic data input and Static data .

ais information

4 Dynamic data input

4.1 External Sensors The AIS has interfaces (configurable as IEC 61162-1 or 61162-2) for position, heading and rate of turn (ROT) sensors. In general, sensors installed in compliance with other carriage requirements of SOLAS Chapter V should be connected to the AIS.1 The sensor information transmitted by AIS should be the same information being used for navigation of the ship. The interfaces should be configured as given in annex 3. Interfacing problems might occur if the existing sensors found on board do not have serial (IEC 61162) outputs.

4.2 Position, COG and SOG GNSS sensors normally have IEC 61162 outputs for position, COG and SOG suitable for directly interfacing the AIS.

However, it is important to note that:

  • The Geodetic Datum of the position data transmitted by the sensor is WGS 84 and that an IEC 61162 DTM sentence is configured.
  • AIS is able to process two reference points for its antenna position, one for external and one for an internal sensor.

If more than one external reference point is used, the appropriate information needs to be input to the AIS to adjust reference point information.


4.3 Heading A compass providing heading information is a mandatory sensor input to the AIS. A converter unit (e.g. stepper to NMEA) will be needed to connect AIS if the ship is compass does not provide an IEC 61162 output. Some ships of less than 500 gross tonnage may not carry a compass providing heading information.


4.4 Rate of Turn All ships may not carry a Rate-Of-Turn (ROT) Indicator according to resolution A.526(13). However, if a rate-of-turn indicator is available and it includes an IEC 61162 interface, it should be connected to the AIS. If ROT information is not available from a ROT indicator, the direction of turn may (optionally) be derived from heading information through:

  • The compass itself,
  • An external converter unit (see paragraph 4.3),
  • The AIS itself (see annex 1).


4.5 Navigational Status A simple means should be provided for the operator to input the ship’s navigational status (e.g. underway using engine, at anchor, not under command, restricted in ability to maneuver, etc) information into the AIS. The AIS may be connected to the ship’s navigational status lights.


5 Static Information

The AIS standards require that certain static, voyage-related, and dynamic information be entered manually, normally by means of the MKD, or by means of IEC 61162 sentences “SSD” and “VSD” via the presentation interface if such provisions exist.


5.1 Entered at initial installation of AIS Information that should be entered at the initial installation of the AIS includes:

  • Maritime Mobile Service Identity (MMSI) number
  • IMO vessel number
  • Radio call sign
  • Name of ship
  • Type of ship
  • Dimension/reference for position of the electronic position fixing device (EPFD) antenna (see paragraph

ais static information


ais ship type

other ship

5.2) Access to MMSI, IMO number and other AIS controls (like power and channel settings) will be controlled, e.g. by password. The Call Sign, Name of Ship and Type of Ship should be input to the AIS, either manually using the MKD or by means of IEC 61162 sentences “SSD” and “VSD” via the PI. Type of Ship information should be in accordance with the table given in annex 2 (Table 18 from Rec. ITU-R M.1371-1).

For example, a cargo ship not carrying dangerous goods, harmful substances, or marine pollutants; would use identifier ì70î. Pleasure craft would use identifier ì37î. Note that those ships whose type identifier begins with a ì3î should use the fourth column of the table. Depending on the vessel, cargo and/or the navigational conditions, this information may be voyage related and would therefore need to be changed before beginning or at some time during the voyage. This is defined by the second digit in the fourth column of the table. 5.2 Reference point of position The AIS stores one external reference point for the external GNSS antenna position and one internal reference point if an internal GNSS is to be used as fallback for position reporting. The locations of theses reference points have to be set during installation using values A, B, C, D; as described in paragraph


5.3. The external reference point may also be a calculated common reference position.


Additionally, the content of the Ship Static Data (“SSD”) sentence on the PI, including the reference point for position is being processed by the AIS, and the AIS memory for the external reference point is set in accordance with the content of this “SSD”(e.g. used by an INS).

5.3 Ship’s dimensions Ship’s dimensions should be entered using the overall length and width of the ship indicated by the values A, B, C, and D in the following figure. Ship’s dimensions (A+B and C+D) should be identical when entering internal and external reference points.


In the rare case of an EPFD antenna installed in the portside corner of a rectangular bow, the values A and C would be zero. Should this be the case, one of these values should be set to 1 in order to avoid misinterpretation as not available because A=C=0 is used for that purpose.


6 Long-range function The AIS long-range function needs a compatible long-range communication system (e.g. Inmarsat-C or MF/HF radio as part of the GMDSS). If this is available, a connection between that communication system and the Class A mobile unit can be made. This connection is needed to activate the LR function of AIS. Its input/output port should meet the requirement of IEC 61162-2.




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