Past, present, and future of the satellite-based automatic identification system: areas of applications (2004–2016)

In 2016, the world shipping fleet grew by 3.5%. Even if the annual growth rate remains at its lowest since 2013, the global situation is still in overcapacity (UNCTAD 2016). Ninety percent of global trade, by volume, is done by sea. Monitoring this fleet helps with vessel navigation, informing to help avoid critical situations such as collisions, accidents leading to oil pollution, grounding, or ships in distress, but also because traffic management in congested areas is essential. For system wide management, in regions such as MPAs (marine protected areas), conservation is the key factor, and movements can be monitored and analyzed in order to determine illegal or suspicious activities, or in order to limit and/or divert traffic, to mitigate the risks to species subject to protection. It is among these efforts that the automatic identification system (AIS) can play a key role. Since 2004, this VHF transceiver-based reporting system, imposed by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), has shifted from a traditional vessel identification device to a tool used in a wide variety of applications. The most common uses are safety and security; these issues are quite visible in the media and may touch more people on a global scale (e.g., piracy, oil spills). Over the years, AIS has become, especially with the emergence of the satellite-based capture of the signal in 2011, a widely used tool for developing applications such as fisheries monitoring, marine conservation, air pollution forecasting and modeling, ballast water monitoring, invasive species transport, and many more. In this paper, we propose to review the peer-reviewed publications related to the uses and applications of the AIS.

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    • © 2018 Mélanie Fournier et al. The contents of this paper reflect the views of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Transportation Research Board or the National Academy of Sciences.
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  • Publication Date: 2018-9


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  • Accession Number: 01684894
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Sep 27 2018 8:31AM