SevenStar Electronics S287 AIS Class B Transponder User Manual SeaTracer USA Iss 1 3

SevenStar Electronics Ltd AIS Class B Transponder SeaTracer USA Iss 1 3

Revised User Manual with end user programming removed

© SevenStar 2008                              1                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 SeaTraceR  S.287 Class B AIS Transponder (FCC ID: RIKS287) USER MANUAL - USA          TM SevenStar Electronics Ltd
© SevenStar 2008                              2                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 About this manual…       This manual contains details and recommendations for the installation and use of the SeaTraceR S.287 Class B AIS Transponder from SevenStar Electronics Ltd. Please read through the installation notes carefully BEFORE attempting to connect power to the unit. The unit will need programming with your MMSI and other details before it can be fitted. Please note that incorrect installation or operation may void your warranty. Unpacking… The carton contains your SeaTraceR Class B AIS transponder with mounting bracket and integral power lead, this User Manual, a combined serial/NMEA data cable and a CD-ROM containing additional information. To install and operate the unit, you will also need a +12Vdc nominal power source, a VHF antenna and a GPS antenna (these should be separate from other antennae fitted to the vessel). Note: BEFORE installation, your vessel’s MMSI and other static data need to be entered into the unit. This may be performed using  SevenStar’s ‘proAIS’ software, but note that for US territories the FCC have ruled that this must be done by an appropriately qualified person such as a suitably trained installer or dealer. Furthermore, it is a Federal offence to knowingly enter an unauthorised MMSI or false static data. (Please contact your dealer if you need assistance or advice.) Once programmed and installed, the SeaTraceR Class B AIS transponder will be able to automatically exchange MMSI, vessel name, position, call sign, course and speed data with other vessels and shore stations. Other suitably equipped vessels will be able to see your position clearly. Connect your SeaTraceR unit to your chart plotter or PC with the data cable provided to SEE the full benefits of AIS - you will then be able to see the ID, position, speed and course of all AIS equipped vessels in range! Please now take the time to read the rest of this manual to get the best from your Class B AIS Transponder!
© SevenStar 2008                              3                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 User Manual Contents…  Warranty statement, Declaration of Conformity  Radio Licensing, General Notices  Installation…3 easy steps   1. Programming your transponder   2. Installing the unit   3. Connecting the SeaTraceR, Serial Port Connection  Using your AIS transponder  Getting the most out of AIS  Your 'proAIS' software  Maintenance  About SevenStar  APPENDICES - Further info    Options  Antenna choice and mounting  What serial data is sent or received  Description of LED indicators  Trouble shooting guide  More about AIS  Standards  Product Specification  Glossary Warranty… This product carries a 2-year return-to-factory warranty against defects due to faulty manufacture or materials (i.e. 2 years from date of manufacture). In the event of a problem, please follow the simple trouble-shooting guide in this manual before contacting your dealer. Declaration of Conformity… SevenStar Electronics Ltd declares that this product is in compliance with the essential requirements and other provisions of the R&TTE directive 1995/5/EC.  A full Declaration may be viewed or downloaded from our web site at   The product carries the CE mark, notified body number and alert symbol as required by the R&TTE directive.  The SeaTraceR is approved by BABT and BSH in the EU, and by USCG and FCC, and carries the FCC ID: RIKS287 Intended EC country of use: GB  FR  ES  SE AT  NL  PT  DK NO  BE  IT   FI IE  LU  GR  CH
© SevenStar 2008                              4                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 Radio Licensing… IMPORTANT: In most countries the operation of an AIS unit is included under the vessels marine VHF licence provisions. The vessel on to which the AIS unit is to be installed must therefore possess a current VHF radiotelephone licence that lists the AIS system and the vessel Call Sign and MMSI number. Please contact the relevant authority in your country for more information. FCC Compliance… This equipment has been tested and found to comply with the limits for a Class B digital device, pursuant to part 15 of the FCC Rules. These limits are designed to provide reasonable protection against harmful interference in a residential installation. This equipment generates, uses and can radiate radio frequency energy and, if not installed and used in accordance with the instructions, may cause harmful interference to radio communications. General Notices…  The marine Automatic Identification System (AIS) uses a satellite-based system such as the Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) network to determine position. The accuracy of these networks is variable and is affected by factors such as the antenna positioning, how many satellites are used to determine a position and how long satellite information has been received for. It is desirable wherever possible therefore to verify both your vessels AIS-derived position data and other vessels AIS-derived position data with visual or radar based observations.  The compass safe distance of this unit is 0.5m or greater (for 0.3° error as per specification).  In accordance with a policy of continual development and product improvement the SeaTraceR hardware and software may be upgraded from time to time and future versions may therefore not correspond exactly with this manual. When necessary upgrades to the product will be accompanied by updates or addenda to this manual. (Check on web site)  Please take time to read this manual carefully and to understand its contents fully so that you can install and operate your AIS system correctly and get the full benefit.  Information contained in this manual is liable to change without notice. SevenStar Electronics Ltd. disclaims any liability for consequences arising from omissions or inaccuracies in this manual and any other documentation provided with this product.
© SevenStar 2008                              5                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 Installation…3 easy steps Installing the SeaTraceR is straightforward using simple tools, but you will need to check you have everything ready first.  The unit must be programmed with your MMSI, vessel name, size, etc. This must be done by a suitably qualified installer or dealer. The MMSI is usually listed on the vessel’s radio license. If you do not have one, you will need to apply for one – ask your dealer or Coastguard if in doubt.  Mount the unit safely, out of the way, in a protected place.  You have to connect up the unit – the connections are shown below       a) The SeaTraceR comes with a 1metre supply lead for you to connect up to your vessel’s +12Vdc supply – it is strongly recommended that you fit an in-line fuse, 2A rated b) VHF antenna – mount as high on the vessel as practical for best performance, clear from obstruction or other antennas, and must be fitted with a 50 ohm TNC plug. (See page 15) c) GPS antenna – this must be an ACTIVE type (has a built-in amplifier). Mount with a clear view of the sky, away from any possible sources of interference. Must be fitted with a 50 ohm TNC plug. (See page 16) d) To view the received vessel positions, etc, connect the 9-way serial/NMEA port on the unit to your laptop PC or chart plotter, which must be running software capable of reading and displaying AIS B data, using the data cable provided.  Alternatively, you can use the SX.588 combined GPS/AIS antenna available from SevenStar dealers, which makes installation even easier. SeaTraceRAIS Class B Transponder Step 1 Step 2 VHF antenna GPS antenna +12Vdc nom (Red/brown =+ve) NMEA/serial data cable Step 3
© SevenStar 2008                              6                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 1. Programming the transponder…  Before an AIS Class B Transponder will operate fully, you need to program in a few very simple details about your vessel:   MMSI  Vessel name  Dimensions  Position of the GPS antenna  Vessel Type  Vessel Call sign  WARNING: It is a violation of the rules of the Federal Communications Commission to input an MMSI that has not been properly assigned to the end user, or to otherwise input any inaccurate data in this device. The entry of static data into a Class B AIS device shall be performed by the vendor of the device or by an appropriately qualified person in the business of installing marine communications equipment on board vessels. In no event shall the entry of static data into a Class B AIS device be performed by the user of the device or the licensee of a ship station using the device. Knowingly programming a Class B AIS device with inaccurate static data, or causing a Class B AIS device to be programmed with inaccurate static data, is prohibited.  Your dealer will tell you how this can be done for you – just make sure you have your vessel information with you! And please make sure all the data fields are completed to get the most out of your new AIS transponder!
© SevenStar 2008                              7                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 2. Mounting the unit… It is recommended that the unit is attached to a solid wooden, fibreglass or composite surface with >15mm long self-tapping screws or similar.  Position the unit and the cables so that any water running down the wires drips off rather than collecting on the unit.      Note: the bracket provided can be used to mount the unit in several orientations - simply unscrew the black knurled thumbscrews, and fit the bracket in the orientation that suits you. Once installed, you can think of the unit as a computer modem – you should have no need to check it regularly – so mount it out of the way where it will not be knocked or subject to excessive vibration, temperature, sunlight, fuel or water.  It should be mounted at least 0.5m from any magnetic compass. It makes good sense to have the LEDs visible in case you do ever need to check the unit. CAUTION:  The  SeaTraceR unit is designed for operation in the temperature range -25 °C to +55 °C. Do not install (or use) the  SeaTraceR unit in environments which exceed this range. CAUTION:  Do not install the SeaTraceR unit in an environment where it can be subject to excessive exposure to water. CAUTION:  The casing of the SeaTraceR unit is NOT isolated from the negative terminal of the supply and therefore it is recommended that the unit is not attached to metal parts of the vessel. (This avoids any potential ‘ground loop’ problems.) CAUTION:  BE SURE TO USE THE CORRECT TOOLS AND SAFETY   EQUIPMENT WHEN INSTALLING THE UNIT AND THE ANTENNAS. IF IN DOUBT, ASK A PROFESSIONAL TO INSTALL IT FOR YOU.
© SevenStar 2008                              8                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 3. Connecting the SeaTraceR… WARNING:   DO NOT connect the SeaTraceR unit to a mains (line) AC electrical supply, as an electric shock or fire hazard could result. CAUTION:  Do not connect the SeaTraceR unit to a DC supply exceeding 15.6 V or reverse the supply polarity. Damage to the unit may result. VHF antenna: For best performance, use a VHF antenna that covers up to 162.025MHz – not all do! Mount as high on the vessel as practical for best performance, clear from obstruction or other antennas, and it must be fitted with a 50 ohm TNC plug. (These connectors were designed for use in marine environments, and provide a splash-proof connection when mated.) See warning in Appendices about antenna positioning.  GPS: The SeaTraceR unit requires a +5v-powered active GPS antenna, suitable for a marine environment, and the down lead will need to be terminated in a TNC 50 ohm plug. The SeaTraceR feeds +5v to the antenna automatically via the GPS antenna lead – you do not need a separate supply. Alternatively: SevenStar have developed a combined GPS/AIS antenna for use with its AIS products. This makes installation quick and easy. Ask for details on our SX.588 combo antenna! Data: In order to see the data from approaching vessels and aids to navigation, you need to display the messages the SeaTraceR receives and decodes. To do this you need to connect a chart plotter, laptop PC, PC serial terminal or other display device to the SeaTraceR Serial/NMEA data port (9 way male sub-D connector on the rear panel). To connect to a PC or similar device, use the cable provided to connect to the PC serial port. To connect to a NMEA instrument, use the NMEA/RS422 connections on the cable provided (connections are shown in the next section). Note that the software in the display device must be configured for AIS operation AND must be able to receive the standard Class B operation NMEA sentences. This external display unit software is not part of the SeaTraceR transponder package – consult the manufacturer of the unit if you are in doubt about it – most manufacturers are issuing free upgrades for their units.
© SevenStar 2008                              9                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 Power: Connect a 12V DC power source (9.6-15.6V) capable of supplying 2A peak, 0.4A continuous to the DC power lead (brown/red = positive, black/blue=negative).  IT IS STRONGLY RECOMMENDED THAT AN IN-LINE FUSE IS USED, RATING 2A.  Connector for active GPS            Connector for VHF antenna Antenna (includes +5v feed)   Power cable    Data and Programming Connector  View of SeaTraceR rear panel
© SevenStar 2008                              10                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 Serial Data Connection… There is a 9-way D-type male connector mounted on the rear panel of the SeaTraceR transponder.  This connector is used initially to program the unit with your MMSI, vessel name and other vessel data, and then once the transponder is installed, to send data about other vessels to your plotter or PC software for display. The connector provides input/output of data in two different formats, RS232 and RS422/NMEA – either may be used. The pin connections are shown in the following diagram (as seen looking at the rear panel):               A minimum keypad and display (MKD) unit, chart plotter, PC or other display device may be connected to the SeaTraceR via an appropriate cable assembly.  The default baud rate of the data link is 38.4kBaud with 8 data bits, one stop bit and no parity.  No handshaking is used. The data interface conforms to IEC 61162-1. See page 17 for further info. PIN FUNCTION  WIRE COLOUR 1  Silent mode +ve  BLACK 2  RS232 Tx (data out from unit)  BROWN 3  RS232 Rx (data in to unit)  RED 4  Silent mode -ve  ORANGE 5  Signal ground, cable screen  YELLOW 6  RS422 Tx +ve   (data out from unit)   GREEN 7  RS422 Tx –ve      BLUE 8  Rs422 Rx +ve    (data in to unit)  VIOLET 9  RS422 Rx –ve      GREY  1      2       3       4       5  6      7       8       9    Note: wire colours may vary from that stated. If in doubt, buzz it out. Date cable detail SeaTraceR NMEA/RS422 PC serial port        and optional connections Data connector on rear panel of SeaTraceR
© SevenStar 2008                              11                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 Using your new transponder… Switching on… When the +12V supply is switched on all four LEDs visible on the front panel of the unit will flash twice. The red green and blue LEDs will then go out, leaving the yellow LED lit.  All GPS receivers need to ‘lock’ onto the signals from at least 3 satellites before they can compute a position, so there is a delay before full operation is available - this process may take up to 30 minutes worst case if the GPS receiver is starting from ‘cold’ (no previous position information). When this has been achieved, there is a further short delay until the unit transmits its first position report (message 18) whereupon the yellow LED will go out and the green LED will illuminate, indicating that the unit is now operating correctly. The blue LED will flash each time an incoming AIS messages is received.        GREEN YELLOW  RED  BLUE  LED Power & Status OK  Unable to transmit  Fault detected  Data received  FUNCTION   Your AIS Class B Transponder is now fully working! Your plotter or PC, if connected and set correctly, should now show you all AIS-equipped vessels within range (and remember, this includes all commercial vessels > 300 tonnes, which HAVE to fit AIS transponders, and AIS-equipped racons, as well as the growing numbers of leisure craft and work boats now fitting these units.) And of course, your position will also be shown on THEIR displays.
© SevenStar 2008                              12                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 Getting the most from AIS… Some hints and useful advice:  • Switch it on!  Your SeaTraceR consumes only 4 watts – less than a single nav light.  Only switch it off when you are safely tied up in harbour. • Keep it fully operational! – then other vessels, Coastguard or VTS (Vessel Traffic Services) in port areas will be able to call you if they see you running into danger. • Read the manuals for your plotter or chart software to make sure you are displaying the AIS targets in the most useful way.  It may be possible to filter what is shown to avoid too much clutter in crowded waterways – and make sure you are not using too large a range relative to your speed. • AIS targets are shown as triangles giving position and heading.  A vector may also be shown to indicate speed over ground so you can assess any collision risk. • In the very near future, aids to navigation (AtoNs) such as buoys, channel markers and lighthouses will be identified by AIS transmissions at regular intervals.  Shore stations will also be capable of creating “virtual AtoNs” where a warning will appear on your chart in the appropriate position without there being a buoy physically in position.  This is likely to be used for temporary situations such as wrecks, or buoys which are out of position. • For maximum help in poor visibility, AIS should ideally be combined with radar.  Radar can show passive targets such as debris or vessels not equipped with functioning AIS transmitters.  AIS will help to identify targets acquired by radar plotting aids such as MARPA, which can give automatic warnings of close approach. • Always plan to keep a safe margin to avoid close quarters situations – at least 0.5nm closest point of approach (CPA), and more for vessels restricted in ability to manoeuvre.  Aids such as AIS and MARPA can give a false sense of security; so don’t forget to use the Mk.1 Eyeball to confirm the situation and to navigate according to the Collision Regulations. • The Collision Regulations are not negotiable, but if you are uncertain of another vessel’s intentions and they have an AIS transmitter, then you will be able to readily call them on DSC or channel 16.
© SevenStar 2008                              13                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 'proAIS' software… If you have been provided with a CD-ROM with your SeaTraceR, it should contain a 'soft' copy of this manual, plus some interesting and informative software called 'proAIS'. In order to use it, load the software onto your PC, then connect your SeaTraceR to your PC using the serial 9-way cable provided to a suitable serial port. (If your PC does not have a serial port, you can connect using a USB-to-serial adaptor widely available from computer stores.) Connect +12v power to the SeaTraceR, start the 'proAIS' software, make sure the correct port is selected, and then click the 'Connect' button.  proAIS offers you a number of ways of looking at the AIS data being processed by your SeaTraceR Transponder, and also at the operation of the integral GPS receiver. There are a number of pages arranged as 'tabs' across the top of the page.  Static Data: This page displays the static data relating to the vessel, including the MMSI which must be programmed before the unit will function as a two-way transponder. See page 6 of this manual.  GPS Status: This tab shows the status of the internal GPS receiver, and includes the current position fix, course and speed as well as bar graphs of the strength of the GPS satellite signals being received. This can be used to verify correct GPS antenna connection and operation.  Diagnostics:  This tab shows the internal condition of the SeaTraceR. It includes the information used to drive the LED's on the unit front panel, software version numbers, internal power supply measurements, and some statistics on numbers of messages received on each of the two AIS VHF channels. When you turn on you will see the conditions change as GPS lock is achieved, and messages are received.
© SevenStar 2008                              14                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 Other vessels: This page displays messages received from other vessels transmitting AIS data in your vicinity. Data from Class A transponders is shown in black text, and that from Class B Transponders is shown in blue text. MMSI, vessel name and call sign is displayed, along with speed, course, and latitude and longitude. An estimate of each vessels distance from you is also given.  Safety messages: AIS-equipped vessels have the ability to send text 'Safety Related Messages', either in Broadcast or Addressed mode. This page allows you to see any such messages, with their UTC time received and the MMSI of the sender.    Serial data: This page displays the raw NMEA0183 serial data being processed by the SeaTraceR. There is a facility to create a log file where received NMEA data can be logged.    Commands: Under this tab there are some user-selectable options for your SeaTraceR unit. You can set the port data baud rate, and how often GPS data and alarm data is output via the serial link. Depending on software version installed, you may also be able to select 'silent mode', and/or set-up & send a 'Safety Related Message'
© SevenStar 2008                              15                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 Maintenance… The SeaTraceR unit is sealed against ingress of water or dust to IP-65. There are no user-serviceable parts inside, and the unit is protected against tampering, so DO NOT ATTEMPT TO OPEN THE UNIT. No regular maintenance is required other than wiping down with a soft cloth as necessary, and keeping the connectors in good condition. WARNING:   Unauthorised opening of the SeaTraceR unit will invalidate the warranty. CAUTION:   Avoid using chemical solvents to clean the SeaTraceR as some solvents can damage the case or label material. NOTE:   The SeaTraceR unit contains no user serviceable parts. Contact your Service Agent for repair if necessary. About SevenStar… SevenStar was created in 2002 by committed, professional engineers with extensive experience in the design, manufacture, sales and marketing of marine safety electronic apparatus and other high tech communications equipment. SevenStar’s S.701 SART (Search And Rescue Transponder) set new standards in marine electronics, and its innovative design enabled it to be the first that can be shipped globally as non-hazardous cargo. It is EU ‘Wheelmark’ and FCC approved, and it has since captured around 75% share of the latest market segments. SevenStar also designs bespoke transponders for both marine and airborne use. Both the SeaTraceR Class B AIS transponder and SeaVieweR dual AIS/GPS Receiver have followed the same market-leading philosophy and both use the latest digitally-defined radio techniques to achieve and exceed the demanding IEC AIS specification released during 2006. The robust, IP-65 rated aluminium enclosure and bracket have been designed to service both the professional vessel market and the safety-conscious leisure user equally. SevenStar is approved and audited annually to ISO 9001:2000. Its GMDSS/SOLAS products are 'Wheelmark' approved and the company is audited annually by Bureau Veritas. SevenStar Electronics Ltd
© SevenStar 2008                              16                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 APPENDICES List of Appendices… • Options • Warnings • Antennas and antenna mounting • What serial data is sent or received • Description of LED indicators • Trouble shooting guide • More about AIS  • Standards • SeaTraceR Specifications • Glossary   Options… If your business depends on temporary  periods of ‘position reporting silence’, for example to safeguard a special fishing ‘sweet spot’, it is possible to fit a switch to your vessel that will temporarily disable the Transmit function of the SeaTraceR. See wiring connections earlier in this manual. It must be stressed that this compromises the safety of your vessel and other vessels, and must NOT be done without careful consideration. It may also lead to intervention by the Coastguard or other authorities to investigate why you are not transmitting. (The SeaTraceR also has the capability of sending what is called a Safety Related Message (SRM), transmitted as VDL message number 14. At the time of printing it is currently undecided who should listen and/or respond to any such messages.)
© SevenStar 2008                              17                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 Warnings… VHF Antenna Connection… Connecting a badly mismatched VHF antenna, leaving the VHF antenna port disconnected, using a poor quality or poorly jointed cable, or shorting the VHF antenna port will activate the internal VSWR alarm, causing the unit to stop sending position reports, and may cause damage to the transponder. Radio Frequency Exposure…  This equipment generates and radiates radio frequency electromagnetic energy and, if not installed and used in accordance with the instructions, may cause harmful interference or even personal injury. Never switch on the equipment without the VHF antenna properly connected. To maximise performance, and minimise human exposure to RF energy, always mount the antenna at least 1.5 meters from the transponder. This system has a Maximum Permissible Exposure (MPE) radius of 1.5m, assuming max antenna gain of +3dbi. Use of higher gain antennas would require a greater MPE radius and is not recommended. The VHF antenna should be mounted at a minimum vertical distance of 3 metres from the head of any person standing on deck in order to meet international safety directives on Maximum Permissible Exposure (MPE) / Specific Absorption Rate (SAR). Failure to adhere to these limits could expose persons within the 3 metre radius to RF radiation in excess of the recommended MPE / SAR limits.  Antennas and Antenna Mounting… VHF antenna for AIS use… The VHF antenna employed for AIS use: ¾ Must be a dedicated antenna, i.e. not shared with any other VHF transmitter/receiver. ¾ Must be suitable for marine shipboard applications (index of protection, ruggedness, means of mounting, etc.)  ¾ Should be omni-directional and vertically polarised with a bandwidth
© SevenStar 2008                              18                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 sufficient to maintain VSWR <1.5 over the frequency range 156 – 163 MHz. As a minimum the -3dB bandwidth must cover the two AIS channels and the DSC Channel. ¾ Should be mounted with at least a two metre vertical separation distance from any other VHF antenna used for speech or DSC communication but see also the section “Radio Frequency Exposure” Warning above. GPS Antenna… The GPS antenna used must be of the active type (i.e. it should incorporate a low noise amplifier) and must be suitable for marine shipboard applications (index of protection, ruggedness, means of mounting, etc.).  It must be capable of running from the +5v that is fed up the GPS coax cable. Most +5v active GPS antennas will work well with the SeaTraceR on short to medium cable lengths. If you need to use long cables then you may need to select an antenna with a higher gain (in dB) to deliver an acceptable signal level to the SeaTraceR GPS antenna connector. (Antenna gain - cable loss should be more than approx 15dB.) The GPS antenna to be used for AIS use must be a dedicated antenna, i.e. not shared with any other GPS receiver. Installation of the GPS antenna is critical for the performance of the built -in GPS receiver that is used for correct timing of the transmitted data, and also for the supply of navigational information should the main navigational GPS fail. We strongly recommend that: • The GPS antenna is mounted in a slightly elevated position and free of shadow effect from the ship’s superstructure • The GPS antenna has a free view through 360 degrees with a vertical angle of 5 to 90 degrees above the horizon. • As the received GPS signal is very sensitive to noise and interference generated by other onboard transmitters, ensure that the GPS antenna is placed as far away as possible from radar, Inmarsat and Iridium transmitters and ensure the GPS antenna is free from direct view of the radar and the Inmarsat beam.  • It is also important that any MF/HF and other VHF transmitter antennas are kept as far away as possible from the GPS antenna. Try to keep the GPS antenna at least 3 meters away from these antennas.
© SevenStar 2008                              19                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 What serial data is sent or received… As mentioned above, the serial port is used for programming the unit as well as for ‘passing on’ the AIS data received from other vessels, AtoNs and shore stations.  Note: Either RS232 or RS422 connections may be used. RS232 is intended for connection to PC serial ports and similar devices. RS422 is a balanced system, in which +ve and –ve signals are used to give good immunity to noise. These can be used to connect to NMEA ports on plotters, etc. (It is allowable in many cases to just use the +ve connections and ground (0v), but this will be more susceptible to electrical noise.) Data/message types vary with the activity.  a) During programming, the data/message types are proprietary to the SeaTraceR.  b) Power up messages: On power up the unit will report details of the firmware versions residing in the unit.   c) In normal AIS transponder operation, each message received over the VHF Data Link (VDL) is decoded and relayed on to the display unit as a VHF Data Link Message (VDM). d) Also as part of normal operation, the SeaTraceR’s VHF data link own vessel messages (VDO) transmitted over the VDL are also sent to the display unit. e) AIS regional channel assignment messages (ACA) received. These are derived from an incoming VHF Data Link message (message 22) or from a DSC message.  f) AIS channel management information source (ACS) messages. g) Alarm messages (ALR, TXT) can be sent to the display unit and Alarm acknowledgement messages (ACK) received from it. h) It is possible to modify the behaviour of the SeaTraceR slightly using one of the pins – see ‘Options’ section. (VDM, VDO, ACA, ACS, ALR, TXT and ACK messages conform to NMEA 0183. Please refer to NMEA 0183 for full details of these AIS messages.)
© SevenStar 2008                              20                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 Description of LED Indicators… Status – GREEN  (‘All OK’) This green LED indicates, when lit, that power has been connected correctly to the transponder, that the transponder hardware has been programmed, that the operating software is present and running, that GPS lock has been acquired and position data transmitted, and that the VHF port appears to be connected correctly.   TX Timeout – YELLOW  (‘Unable to Tx/lost GPS Warning’) This yellow LED indicates, when lit, that the SeaTraceR transmitter is currently prevented from transmitting.  If the unit has not been able to transmit a position report during the last expected two reporting intervals, either because of loss of GPS lock, or for operational reasons such as a Message 23 quiet period, high channel load conditions, etc, the yellow LED will illuminate. It will also illuminate if the user has chosen to use the ‘silent mode’ option. This is a warning condition only and indicates that your vessels position is not currently being reported to other vessels. Reception of other vessel AIS information by the SeaTraceR is not affected. When the unit is able to commence reporting again the yellow LED goes out.  Error - RED  (‘Fault condition exists’) This red LED indicates, when lit, one of the following status conditions: • Transmitter lockout timer (1 second max) has operated • GPS is unable to gain lock even after 30 minutes • VHF antenna VSWR is out of range (poor connection, badly sited antenna) • Power Supply is out of range • Background noise level is above the threshold level (-77dBm) (Poor connection and/or poor antenna siting.) Rx Data - BLUE  (‘Data is being received’) This blue LED indicates, when it flashes, that a valid AIS message has just been received. This will be lit frequently in a busy environment. If the SRM option is provided (factory option) the blue LED is lit to indicate that an SRM has just been sent.
© SevenStar 2008                              21                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 Trouble-shooting guide…      With all electronic equipment, unexpected or severe transient conditions may leave the equipment in a ‘locked-up’ state. Every effort has been made to prevent this occurring with the SeaTraceR. If you think this may be the case, simply disconnect (switch off) the power connection, leave for a few minutes, and then reconnect the power.  If you have reason to think your transponder is not working correctly, follow this procedure before contacting your technician or dealer:  Unit shows no LEDs lit, sends no data for display: ¾ Faulty power connection or in-line fuse blown ………Unit should operate normally when fault is fixed  Unit powers up but yellow LED comes on: ¾ Poor or broken GPS antenna connection, poor antenna position ¾ GPS signal blocked, either physically, or by excessive electrical noise ¾ Shore station has requested Class B silent mode ¾ Heavy local AIS traffic has blocked your AIS transmission ………Unit should recover when the condition is removed.  Unit powers up but red LED comes on: ¾ Poor or broken VHF antenna connection, poor antenna position ¾ Interrupted or out of range power connection ¾ GPS has been unable to lock on even after 30 minutes ………Unit should recover when the condition is removed. If the Red LED illuminates continuously even after correcting these items, the unit should be switched off for a few minutes, then tried again. If the fault persists it can be assumed to be faulty and should be switched off (power removed). Consult your dealer or technician. Unit powers up with just green LED on, but no data is displayed: ¾ Poor or incorrect data cable connection to plotter or PC ¾ Plotter or PC not configured or not able to receive AIS sentences Note: If you connect a PC running the Windows utility ‘HyperTerminal’ or similar to the serial port, you should see log data sent regularly. If your terminal settings are correct and you still get no data, either the cable of the unit must be faulty.
© SevenStar 2008                              22                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 More about AIS… The marine Automatic  Identification  System (AIS) is a location and vessel information reporting system. It allows vessels equipped with AIS to automatically and dynamically share and regularly update their position, speed, course and other information such as vessel identity with similarly equipped craft and with shore stations.  Position information is derived from a Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) such as GPS, and communication between vessels or between vessel and shore is by VHF digital transmissions on channel 87B at 161.975MHz, or on channel 88B at 162.025MHz. The system can cope with large numbers of vessels in close proximity because a sophisticated and automatic method of time sharing the radio channel is used to ensure that blocking of individual transmissions is minimised, and any potential degradation of the expected position reporting interval is indicated to the user. If the unit suffers  extreme channel overload conditions it will always recover to normal operation. AIS Classes… There are two classes of AIS unit fitted to vessels, Class A and Class B. In addition AIS base stations may be employed by the Coastguard, port authorities and other authorised bodies. AIS units acting as aids to navigation (AtoNs) can also be fitted to fixed and floating navigation markers such as channel markers and buoys. Class A units are a mandatory fit under the safety of life at sea (SOLAS) convention to vessels above 300 gross tons or which carry more than 11 passengers in International waters. Many other commercial vessels and some leisure craft also fit Class A units. Class B units are currently not a mandatory fit but authorities in several parts of the world are strongly considering this. Class B units are designed for fitting in vessels which do not fall into the mandatory Class A fit category. The SeaTraceR is a Class B unit. Information Transmitted and Received…  Class A units transmit their IMO number (if known), MMSI, Call sign and Name, length and beam, ship type, time, course over ground (COG), speed over ground (SOG), heading, navigational status, rate of turn, draught, cargo type, destination and safety related messages via a short
© SevenStar 2008                              23                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 message service (SMS) facility. Message lengths are variable with static and voyage related information being transmitted less often. Class B units transmit their MMSI, Call Sign and Name, length and beam, ship type, time, course over ground (COG), speed over ground (SOG) and heading.  Standards… This product complies with all the necessary standards under the European R&TTE directive for Article 3.1(a), 3.1(b), 3.2 and 3.3(e).  The following standards have been followed in pursuance of this: • IEC62287-1: 2006-03 Maritime navigation and radiocommunication equipment and systems – Class B shipborne equipment of the automatic identification system (AIS) – Part 1: Carrier-sense time division multiple access (CSTDMA) techniques • IEC60945: 2002-08 Maritime navigation and radiocommunication equipment and systems – General requirements – Methods of testing and required test results • IEC61162-1: Maritime navigation and radiocommunication equipment and systems – Digital interfaces – Part 1: Single talker and multiple listeners • IEC61108-1: GLOBAL NAVIGATION SATELLITE SYSTEMS (GNSS) – Part 1: Global positioning system (GPS) —Receiver equipment — Performance standards, methods of testing and required test results • EN 301 843-1 v2.1: Electromagnetic compatibility and Radio spectrum Matters (ERM); Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) standard for marine radio equipment and services; Part 1: Common technical requirements • EN 50383: 2002 Basic standard for calculation and measurement of electromagnetic field strength and SAR related to human exposure from radio base stations and fixed terminal stations for wireless telecommunications system (110MHz – 40GHz) • EN60950-1: 2001 Information technology equipment – Safety – Part 1: General requirements
© SevenStar 2008                              24                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 SeaTraceR Specifications… Parameter Value Dimensions  180 x 110 x 40 mm (L x W x H) Weight 900g Power DC (9.6-15.6V)   Average power consumption 4W   Peak current rating 2A Internal GPS Receiver  IEC 61108-1 compliant Electrical Interfaces  RS232 38.4kBaud bi-directional   RS422 NMEA 38.4kBaud bi-directional Connectors  VHF Antenna connector - TNC 50 ohm coaxial - on rear panel   GPS Antenna connector - TNC 50 ohm coaxial - on rear panel   RS232 serial/RS422 NMEA serial/silent mode - 9-way sub-D male connector (PC serial connector) - on rear panel    +12Vdc (nom) Power - Integral 1 metre twin core lead, red/brown =+ve.   ***In-line fuse strongly recommended*** VHF Transceiver  Transmitter - single channel   2 Independent, simultaneous VHF Receivers  (One of which is time shared between AIS and DSC)   Frequency: 156.025 to 162.025 MHz in 25 kHz steps Output Power  +33dBm ± 1.5 dB (2 watts nominal) Channel Bandwidth  25kHz Channel Step  25kHz Modulation Modes  25kHz GMSK (AIS, TX and RX)   25kHz AFSK (DSC, RX only)   Bit rate  9600 b/s ± 50 ppm (GMSK)   1200 b/s ± 30 ppm (FSK) RX Sensitivity  Sensitivity - 107dBm 25kHz (Message Error Rate 20%)  Co-Channel 10dB   Adjacent Channel 70dB  IMD 65dB  Blocking 84dB Environmental IEC 60945   Operating Temperature: -25ºC to +55ºC   IEC 62287, Section 5, Cat b) protected from the weather Compass safe distance  0.5 metre Indicators  Status, TX timeout, Error, Rx Data. Operator options  a) 'Silent mode' b) Optional pre-set safety related message (SRM)
© SevenStar 2008                              25                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3 Glossary… +ve   Positive -ve   Negative ACA    (AIS) Regional Assignment Channel Assignment Message  ACK   Acknowledgement ACS    (AIS) Channel management information source messages AFSK    Audio frequency-shift keying ALR   (AIS) Alarm Message AtoN    Aid to Navigation AIS   Automatic Identification System BIIT    Built In Integrity Testing BNC    Bayonet fitting type RF connector CSTDMA  Carrier Sense Time Division Multiple Access COG    Course over Ground CR   Carriage Return CS   Carrier Sense DC   Direct Current DGNSS   Differential Global Navigation Satellite System DSC    Digital Selective calling GLONASS  Global Navigation Satellite System (alternative to GPS) GNSS    Global Navigation Satellite System (GPS, Glonass) GMSK    Gaussian Minimum Shift Keying GPS    Global Positioning Satellite / System HF   High Frequency IMO    International Maritime Organization IEC    International Electrotechnical Commission LED    Light Emitting Diode LF   Line Feed LNA     Low-noise amplifier MF   Medium Frequency
© SevenStar 2008                              26                             S.287/UM1/USA/1.3  MKD    Minimum Keypad and Display MMSI    Maritime Mobile Service Identity MPE    Maximum Permissible Exposure NMEA    National Marine Electronics Association PC   Personal Computer PI   Presentation Interface RF   Radio Frequency RTCM    Radio Technical Commission for Maritime Services RX    Receive or Receiver RFI    Radio frequency interference SAR    Specific Absorption Rate SMS    Short Message System SOG    Speed over Ground SRM    Safety Related Message TDMA    Time-division Multiple Access TNC    Threaded type coaxial connector TX    Transmit or transmitter UTC    Universal Time Co-ordinated VDM    (AIS) VHF Data Link Messages VDO    (AIS) VHF data link own vessel messages VHF    Very High Frequency VSWR    Voltage Standing Wave Ratio   Note… You may find further information and FAQ’s on our web site of interest.  =>

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