How to Conduct a GMDSS Inspection (FCC version)

Category: General

The GMDSS replaces the ship-to-ship safety system that used manual Morse code with a ship-to-shore safety system that uses satellite and automated terrestrial communications systems. The GMDSS requires ships to carry various types of communications equipment depending upon the voyages of the ship rather than the gross tonnage. The GMDSS also requires ships to comply with certain functional requirements.

The GMDSS rules are found in subpart W of Part 80 [Code of Federal Regulations, Title 47, Part 80] and are applicable to the appropriate tonnage and operational areas of Passenger and Cargo vessels.

Under the Communications Act, Fishing vessels are considered to be Cargo vessels and, all these vessels are the subject to Radio Inspection.

To provide a GMDSS inspection the engineer must obtain an appropriate license for Inspectors.

In the course of survey carrying, the inspector should draw-up a report of Inspection. 

A report of Radio Inspection provided can contain a Radio Technician's Remarks.

It is suggested that one copy of appropriate report be
left onboard and one copy be kept with the Surveyor.

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GMDSS Testers at POSIDONIA 2016

Category: General

6th – 11th June 2016 GMDSS Test Equipment was represented at a booth on International Exhibition Posidonia 2016 in Athens, Greece.

Over 80 global Information and Communications Technology (ICT) companies participated at Posidonia 2016 this summer. Thus, GMDSS Testers representatives were pleased to accept numerous guests and to communicate with the old as well as with the recent customers and business partners.

GMDSS Tester at Posidonia 2016

The innovative device BEACON Tester Mini has great success. Previously our clients and customers had chance to learn about this device from video and advertising mailshot, and now the number of service authorities had chance to see and to try it in operation.

Greece is one of the strategic markets where GMDSS Test Equipment has a large number of our Radio Survey equipment users. We recollected a range of the feedback from service engineers (radio inspectors) that use test equipment in every day life and our engineer team will consider and strong up the quality and efficiency of our products and services for better customer satisfaction.

We appreciated much this possibility of meet-at-real with customers and partners, organized by Posidonia. And furthermore we would like to say “thank you” to all our visitors and guests at this event.

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Procedural requirements for Radio Surveyors (Inspectors) by IACS

Category: General

Firms engaged in surveys (inspections) and testing of radio communication equipment: Surveys, inspection, testing, and/or measurement of radio equipment aboard ships or mobile offshore units for compliance with SOLAS regulations, Annual testing of 406 MHz satellite EPIRBs for compliance with SOLAS Regulation IV/15.9, Service Suppliers involved in inspection, performance testing and maintenance of Automatic Identification Systems (AIS) are have to be approved by IACS.

The inspector carrying out the inspection shall have passed the internal training of the supplier in Radiotelephony, GMDSS, and initial and renewal surveys, as applicable.

IACS-members

The inspector shall also have at least one year’s technical school training or as alternative hold evidence that he followed a technical course approved by the relevant Administration, at least one year’s experience as an assistant radio inspector and should preferably hold an appropriate National Radio Operators Certificate, recognised by the ITU, such as a GMDSS General Operator’s Certificate (GOC) or a GMDSS Radioelectronic Certificate (REC). He should be aware of any local conditions for radio signal propagation, of regional radio stations and their facilities, and of the GMDSS infrastructure. 

The supplier shall have the major and auxiliary equipment required for correctly performing the inspection. A record of the equipment used shall be kept. The record shall contain information on manufacturer and type of equipment, and a log of maintenance and calibrations. 

Minimum required instruments: Equipment for measuring frequency, voltage, current and resistance, Equipment for measuring output and reflect effect on VHF and MF/HF, Equipment for measuring modulation on MF/HF and VHF (AM, FM, PM), Acid tester for checking specific gravity of lead batteries, Tester for checking of correct output from Free-Float Satellite EPIRB, Equipment for testing the performance of Automatic Identification Systems (AIS).

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General principles and features of Maritime Mobile Service

Category: General

Article 53 of the International Telecommunication Union Radio Regulations states that all stations in the Maritime Mobile and the Maritime Mobile-Satellite service shall be capable of offering four levels of priority in the following order: Distress, Urgency, Sasfey, Routine.

There are several types of Maritime Mobile Service: Ship Stations, Coastal radio stations, Port operations stations, Aricraft stattion, Rescue Coordination Centers.

The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has allocated various bands of frequencies throughout the radio frequency spectrum to the Maritime Mobile Service and the Maritime Mobile-Satellite Service.

GMDSS Radio Survey

All HF and all VHF marine frequencies are arranged in a channelised format. Channels are designated as either: simplex or duplex.

The ITU has allocated simplex (i.e. single frequency) frequencies in the MF, the VHF and each of the HF maritime bands exclusively for distress and safety purposes. These frequencies are protected by international agreement, and any transmission capable of causing harmful interference to distress and safety signals is prohibited.

DSC is a paging technique used to automate the initial call between two stations. The technical principles are almost identical to NBDP, in that tone information is transmitted from one DSC system to another over a radio link.

DSC is used in the MF, HF and VHF marine bands for distress, urgency and safety alerting.

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COSPAS-SARSAT SYSTEM

Category: General

Cospas-Sarsat was initially developed under a memorandum of understanding among agencies of Canada, France, the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and the United States of America, signed in 1979.

Through their association with the programme, States contribute ground receiving stations that enhance Cospas-Sarsat distress alerting capabilities and/or participate in international Cospas-Sarsat meetings dedicated to the worldwide coordination of system operations and programme management.

The objectives of Cospas–Sarsat are to ensure the long– term operation of the system, provide distress alert and location information on a non–discriminatory basis and support the search and rescue objectives of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

Cospas-Sarsat

The system comprises of:

A space segment operating in low–Earth orbit (LEO) and geostationary orbit (GEO); 


A ground segment consisting of satellite receiving stations, known as local user terminals (LUT), and data distribution centres, known as mission control centres (MCC);

and 
Emergency radio beacons operating at 406 MHz, the characteristics of which comply with appropriate provisions of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and Cospas– Sarsat specifications. 
Further information on the Cospas–Sarsat system can be found in the Admiralty List of Radio Signals (ALrS) Vol. 5.

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GMDSS Testers All in One

BEACON Tester

BEACON Tester

BEACON TESTER enables professional checking of all types of maritime emergency radio beacons that operate in COSPAS-SARSAT system like EPIRBs, PLB. Provides mandatory annual EPIRB testing in accordance with IMO Circular MSC.1/Circ.1039, 1040.

Beacon Tester Mini Wi-Fi

Beacon Tester Mini Wi-Fi

EPIRB Tester Mini w/ W-Fi is the fourth generation Beacon Tester appointed to check the maritime distress beacons (EPIRBs, PLBs) operating via COSPAS-SARSAT system. This device is really lightweight and is capable to operate via Wi-Fi with any smartphone, tablet or laptop. Its operation complies with SOLAS regulation, IMO 1039 and 1040 Circulars.

GMDSS Tester MRTS-7M

GMDSS Tester MRTS-7M

GMDSS Multi Tester MRTS-7M is the first hand-held Multi Tester enabling the testing of all GMDSS equipment: AIS Stations, EPIRBs, VHF and MF/HF Radios with DSC, AIS-SART and NAVTEX. The cutting-edge software is compatible with all operation systems. Automatic generation of test reports for all the range of tested equipment. And all reports are in IMO-required format. Less paper work, more surveys!

SART Tester

SART Tester

The SART Tester provides precise, complete verification of the operation of any Search and Rescue Transponder in accordance with the requirements of IMO Resolution A.802(19). It is professional and user-friendly device for radio surveyors, inspectors, classification societies and administrative authorities.

GMDSS Tester MRTS-7

GMDSS Tester MRTS-7

The MF/HF/VHF/DSC/NAVTEX Marine Radio Test System MRTS-7 is intended to provide accurate, independent validation of the operation of GMDSS-radios in accordance with the requirements under IMO A.948(23) resolution.

Sarsat Beacon Monitor 406

Sarsat Beacon Monitor 406

Cospas-Sarsat Distress Signal Fixed Receiver (hereafter as Sarsat Beacon Monitor 406 – 406MHz emergency radio beacon monitoring system) is intended for 406MHz emergency radio beacon rapid signals reception, decoding and positioning. The equipment is destined to reduce rescue operation time.