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Thames AIS

What is Thames AIS.

The main aim of Thames AIS is to provide the crew of vessels navigating on the River Thames with enhanced situational awareness of the presence and intentions of other vessels navigating in the area. This is of particular benefit in the more constrained areas of Central London where visibility is often obscured by bridges and other obstructions. Elsewhere on the River, Thames AIS ensures that the majority of commercial craft are visible to each other through the presence of an AIS signal thereby increasing navigational safety.

I was responsible for writing the software used onboard vessels and which interfaces with a class ‘A’ transponder. The transponder transmits the vessels position and encrypted passages numbers to a server based in our offices, the port authorities and to other river users. The Thames AIS system is well proven and has been in service since 2006 and is fitted to over 200 Thames vessels.

picture of a skipper using Thames AIS to enter passenger figures.
Skipper using Thames AIS to enter passenger figures

The software is designed to be robust, simple to use and can be mastered with only a few minutes of training.

Thames AIS using an S57 vector chart.
An example of the overview provided by the Thames AIS system.
Thames AIS using raster charts
Thames AIS using raster charts.