Ship-based Automatic Identification System Will Harness Unique Low Earth Orbit (LEO) Remote Sensing Advantages
KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FL. (September 30, 2014) –The Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (the ISS National Lab) today announced an agreement with JAMSS America, Inc. (JAI)—in collaboration with the University of Hawaii, the Greater Houston Port Bureau, Mare Liberum Consulting L.P., and Shine Micro, Inc.—on a project intended to improve maritime vessel tracking from onboard the International Space Station (ISS) U.S. National Laboratory.
Vessels broadcast their position and other information using ship-based Automatic Identification System (AIS) transponders, whose signals are normally received by antennas on the ground. Reception of ship AIS signals using these traditional ground-based methods is limited by line-of-sight requirements between the vessel and the ground antenna. JAI’s project, named Global AIS on Space Station (GLASS), will demonstrate the benefits of using the ISS National Lab as a reliable and maintainable platform to acquire and rebroadcast extended-range AIS signals.
The ISS orbits at approximately 220 miles above Earth’s surface and has an orbital path with strong coverage of relevant shipping channels, providing a valuable space-based option for receiving AIS signals. Receiving data on the ISS and relaying it to the ground may thus improve long-range effectiveness of AIS for maritime planning, safety, and security purposes.
“Today’s announcement is an important step in taking advantage of the station’s unique capabilities,” said the ISS National Lab Director of Portfolio Management Warren Bates. “the ISS National Lab, as manager of the ISS National Lab, hopes to demonstrate the ISS as a viable and cost-effective option for academic, commercial, and government use in many areas. We look forward to seeing JAMSS America, Inc., leverage the ISS as a platform capable of enhancing maritime awareness for ships, increasing efficiency and potentially crew safety.”
For information about the ISS National Lab opportunities, including instructions on submitting research ideas, please visit www.issnationallab.org/solicitations
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About the ISS National Lab: The Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (the ISS National Lab) was selected by NASA in July 2011 to maximize use of the International Space Station (ISS) U.S. National Laboratory through 2020. the ISS National Lab is dedicated to supporting and accelerating innovations and new discoveries that will enhance the health and wellbeing of people and our planet. For more information, visit www.issnationallab.org.
About the ISS National Laboratory: In 2005, Congress designated the U.S. portion of the International Space Station as the nation’s newest national laboratory to maximize its use for improving life on Earth, promoting collaboration among diverse users, and advancing STEM education. This unique laboratory environment is available for use by other U.S. government agencies and by academic and private institutions, providing access to the permanent microgravity setting, vantage point in low Earth orbit, and varied environments of space.
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