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Private AIS networks

Saab TransponderTech has developed an encrypted AIS system…

AIS technology is known to most people operating in the superyacht market. Typically AIS technology is associated with superyachts pinging their locations to various authorities. Saab TransponderTech is looking to change the view on AIS technology by adding unique asset tracking functionality in the Saab R5 Tender Tracking System (TTS).

Saab’s secure private AIS networks adds an overlay onto pre-existing AIS technologies enabling owners and captains to privately track various assets on board superyachts such as tenders, toys and helicopters.

Stefan Karlsson, Director of Sales at Saab TransponderTech, explains that Saab is a Swedish founded defence and security company with its roots in the military domain covering a broad range of products and systems. Karlsson continues, “Saab TransponderTech is a designated subsection of Saab, mainly active in the commercial and civil domains. We have been providing high-quality AIS and navigation products to the professional maritime domain for more than 20 years”.

Through the development of AIS class A devices, widely adopted throughout the superyachtindustry, Saab has in close collaboration with qualified customers further developed an encrypted tracking solution based on AIS technology. By adding a user-selected encrypted communication link to a mothership’s current AIS system, Saab has essentially created a private AIS network allowing various assets, such as tender and toys, to be tracked in real-timefrom the mothership. Karlsson again, “one unique benefit of this system is that it allows participating units to only exchange their position reports between themselves and the mothership, rather than being visible for standard AIS use. Typically, we have delivered these special system versions to qualified customers such as the police, customs, law enforcement agencies, the navy, coast guard and others for a number of years. Through our work with one particular shipyard, we now have a derivative of this concept - the Saab R5 Tender Tracking System - a solution tailored specifically for civil maritime applications, in this case private tracking of smaller boats and toys. While there are other tender tracking systems available on the superyacht market today, they all suffer from the same two problems. Firstly, they require the addition of a different type of technological device to the already tech-saturated bridge area and secondly their range is limited to between three and four nautical miles, a distance widely considered poor.

Since our system is based on AIStechnology, the addition of the secure private AIS system can be overlaid onto superyachts pre-existing systems, meaning that there is no need for additional devices onboard. Equally, because we are already on so many superyachts, it is just a case of updating the system with new software licenses. Another benefit of the Saab R5 Tender Tracking System is range, where we, depending on the height of the mothership’s antenna, are able to track tenders and toys in the range of 10-15 nautical miles.”, Karlsson says.

A recent add-on to the R5 TTS solution is a small transmitter which can conveniently be carried by the driver of a Jet Ski or personal watercraft, rather than being fitted to the vehicle itself.

By leveraging Saab’s strong footprint in the aviation industry and its history from having delivered class-leading transponders for many years we are happy to now also offer a version that is fully compatible with the Saab R5 Tender Tracking System. This development makes the system complete, and customers can now benefit from long-range coverage across all different asset types, both in sea and air. The Saab R5 Tender Tracking System is primarily designed for the safety of tender and toy operators. As such, the system also supports connection of panic buttons, that can either be installed on tenders or carried by toy users.

Saab has an already proven track record within AIS technology. The introduction of the Saab R5 Tender Tracking System marks the starting point on Saab’s journey to become a turnkey AIS solution provider for the superyacht industry. “We will provide our customers with unique benefits by going beyond conventional AIS technology. It’s all about understanding the challenges our customers are facing out there. And it’s our mission to provide better and smarter solutions to their challenges”, Karlsson concludes.

F O R F U L L C O M P A N Y A N D P R O D U C T I N F O R M AT I O N , V I S I T S U P E R Y A C H T N E W S . C O M / S Y I N D E X A N D S E A R C H ‘ S A A B T R A N S P O N D E R T E C H ’

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