HF AIS – Encapsulated in Digital Yacht AIS products for better performance

HF-AIS is an advanced technology that ensures an AIS transceiver reliably processes all transmissions in real time without error. An AIS transceiver with HF-AIS will typically allow you to see up to 30% more targets than transceivers without HF-AIS.  All Digital Yacht transponder products incorporate this technology brought to us by our chip set manufacturer SRT

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You don’t know what you don’t see – if your AIS transceiver does not process (decode) an AIS transmission, you will not see that target on your display. This issue affects AIS Class A, Class B and receivers.

HF-AIS technology solves this critical and unseen issue, which can result in you missing up to 30% of available targets and data. An AIS transceiver can be required to receive and then decode up to 2,250 transmissions every minute – 37 every second – with each AIS transmission containing up to 300 bytes (your GPS position, MMSI, Speed, Course etc), that’s a huge amount of information that must be continuously processed. When this data is not processed due to the transceiver being overwhelmed with transmissions, the data is lost forever – often up to 30% of targets. The lost transmissions could be from a nearby vessel on a collision course with you – therefore lost data and targets are of critical importance to your safety.

  • Proven to see up to 30% more AIS targets and data with HF-AIS
  • HF-AIS ensures all available AIS transmissions are fully decoded and processed in real time.
  • HF-AIS is advanced core technology, that combines hardware and software, embedded in the ‘processing brain’ of our AIS transceivers.
  • HF-AIS is particularly beneficial in busy areas where the volume of AIS transmissions can cause processing errors and lost data in transceivers without HF-AIS.

hf ais

HF-AIS technology is a unique combination of hardware and software embedded within
our AIS transceiver. It comprises a high performance processor (chip) which has the processing speed to easily cope with reliably decoding large amounts of data in real time
on which is highly efficient software that uses specialist architectures and structures
normally found in data heavy wireless applications such as 3G and 4G cellular phones.
This unique combination of hardware and software is HF-AIS and ensures that our
transceivers will reliably process all available AIS transmissions in real time and without
error.

The ultimate benefit is that you’ll get outstanding performance and the best AIS capability from our transponders.

You can see the effect of the technology in action HERE

Wireless AIS Configuration App for Android

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Our proAIS2 software for configuring and checking our latest generation of AIS transponders is a useful tool, but only being Windows and Mac compatible, it does have its limitations.

With this in mind, we have developed an Android App that allows you to do pretty much everything that proAIS2 does, but wirelessly from your Android Smart Phone or Tablet. AISConfig is a free app, available on the Google Play Store, that works with our AIT1500 (NMEA0183 version), AIT2000 and AIT3000.

Being wireless, you will need a WLN10HS or AIS WiFi Server if using our AIT1500 or AIT2000, but this is a popular combination, so there should be many customers out there that will benefit from this new App and of course our “top of the range” AIT3000 has WiFi built-in so AISConfig is the perfect app for it.

AISConfig for blog

Using AISConfig you can do all of the initial configuration, including programming of the MMSI number and then once setup, you can use AISConfig to monitor the status of the transponder, repeat the LED status (useful if the transponder is behind a panel) and to turn OFF/ON the Silent Mode, avoiding the need for a physical switch.

If AISConfig proves popular, then we will certainly consider producing an Apple iOS version, but for now AISConfig is only available for Android.

Looking for a Class B AIS transponder?

Its always good to have a few weeks at boat shows and listen to customer questions.  Differences between models always crop up as Digital Yacht have a big selection of Class B AIS transponders on offer.  We hope this document helps you decide which is best for your installation.  All units share a common technology platform so will give excellent performance and importantly have future proof SatTrak technology built in.

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AIT1500 Series

All AIS transponders require their own dedicate internal GPS (you can’t use a NMEA feed from an existing GPS).  The AIT1500 series has a super sensitive internal antenna which cuts down on the need for another external antenna.  It will work well even below decks on GRP vessels but steel or wood will attenuate the signal too much.  The AIT1500 series is therefore great for RIBs, Center Consoles and GRP sail boats.  With many larger sail boats now fitting multi function displays in the cockpit, it can be unobtrusively installed in a location adjacent to the MFD and the same for flybridge motor boats.

The AIT1500 comes in two versions – one for NMEA 0183 based systems and one for NMEA 2000 systems.  The later is also self powered from the NMEA 2000 bus so installation really is plug ‘n play.  Both models have a USB interface for PC & MAC for programming and PC plotting.

AIT2000

Has dual NMEA 0183 and NMEA 2000 interfaces plus USB and ships with a dedicated external GPS antenna.  Its a great solution for wooden and steel vessels that require an external GPS antenna

AIT3000

Appropriately called “Nucleus” as it forms a hub in any marine electronics system.  It features our patented ZeroLoss VHF antenna splitter technology so the main VHF antenna can be shared with VHF and AIS which means no need for another VHF antenna and sophisticated connectivity including not just NMEA 0183 and NMEA 2000 but also WiFi for iPad and tablet interfacing.  Up to 7 wifi connected devices can be attached and neat NMEA interfacing allows instrument, AIS and GPS data to be used by hundreds of compatible apps.  There’s also a FM radio antenna outlet.

Here’s a 5 minute guide on Youtube and of course we’re standing by on email and phone to answer any queries.  Digital Yacht – for your biggest and best choice in Class B AIS.

No GPS on Transponder due to loose FME connector

FME Connector Apart

Our AIT2000 and AIT3000 Class B transponders are supplied with a GPS antenna that has a 10m cable terminated in an FME connector (right hand connector in the above image).

These connectors are very slim, not much larger than the coax cable and are much easier to route through the boat. We also supply an FME to TNC adaptor for connecting the cable to the transponder (left hand connector in the above image).

Today we were reminded of the importance of ensuring this adaptor is firmly screwed on to the cable, when a US customer reported that their AIT2000 had stopped getting a GPS fix. After using the proAIS2 software to confirm that the GPS signals were very low, we asked the customer to check the GPS antenna connections to the AIT2000 and sure enough found that the FME connector had become loose and was no longer making a good connection.

A quick tighten of the FME connector in to the adaptor and the AIT2000 started to get a GPS fix again and the customer could continue their cruise.

The nut on the FME connector is 8mm (AF) and the TNC adaptor has two flat indents that are 9.5mm (AF). You can tighten the two connectors quite tightly but avoid using too much force which could damage the connector and cause a different set of problems. The image below shows the FME fully tightened in to the adaptor and there should be about a 1.5mm gap between the FME nut and the collar of the adaptor when properly tightened.

FME Connector Joined

Our GV30 combo GPS and VHF antenna also uses FME connectors and is supplied with a TNC and BNC adaptor, which should also be tightened in the same way.

Full User Manual now available for new transponders

Transponders 2015

With the recent release of our new AIT1500 and AIT3000 Class B Transponders, we now have three Class B Transponder models in our 2015 product range.

Traditionally, we supply our Class B transponders with a printed Quick Start Guide that provides basic information on installation and operation and for many people this is all the information they need. However, for dealers and customers that want to have more details of using, configuring, installing and fault finding our transponders we have now released a combined Full User Manual for the three units.

To download a copy of the AIT1500/2000/3000 Full User Manual V1.00, please click here.

Classic Yacht – Next Generation Nav!

Classic Yacht “Misty” has undergone a $0.5m transformation by A&R Way Boat Builders and the results are stunning.  Classic Boat magazine have a fantastic feature on the restoration in this month’s issue.  She was originally constructed back in 1964 by Lallows.  She’s 37ft 6in (11.5m) LOA – a couple of feet longer than Cheverton’s 1958-designed Danegeld that won everything in sight a year after.  She was in fact designed to beat Danegeld, but ended up as test and demo boat for her original owners – Ratsey and Lapthorn Sailmakers.

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But even a classic yacht deserves some hi-tech navigation and she’s equipped with a Digital Yacht AIT2000 Class B transponder and SPL2000 VHF-AIS antenna splitter to minimise antenna clutter.  This is integrated with a NavLink NMEA to WiFi server so data can be displayed on iPads and tablets through the vessel or in the cockpit leaving a beautiful classic finish but boasting the best in navigation!  Find out more about the NavLink server from HERE

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Digital Yacht Tech Training – A great resource

We’ve decided to publish our dealer training presentations on line so that the whole boating community can benefit.  Paul Sumpner, Digital Yacht’s CTO, was at the CA Clase distributor training event this week and presented a great overview on some of our core technologies including:

  • AIS – Hints and tips on transponder operation, programming and antenna selection
  • Wireless NMEA – differences between TCP/IP and UDP connections and app integration
  • GPS antennas and interfacing
  • Wireless internet and routers including common problems with accessing marina hotspots

Most importantly he covered lots of installation issues with hints and tips and important product selection advice.  Of course, reading a presentation on line is not as good as hearing the real thing so if you do have questions, feel free to contact us.

You can download the presentation from HERE  or click the picture below

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