National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Wallops Flight Facility


Path : data / ais

About AIS Data

description from retired USCG webpage

AIS stands for Automatic Identification System. It is a shipboard broadcast system that acts like a continuous and autonomous transponder, operating in the VHF maritime band. It allows ships to easily track, identify, and, exchange pertinent navigation information from one another or ashore; for collision avoidance, security and VTS reporting.

AIS technology relies on global navigation systems, navigation sensors, and digital communication equipment (i.e. transponders) operating according to standardized communication protocols that permit the voiceless exchange of navigation information between vessels and shore-side vessel traffic centers. AIS transponders on vessels can broadcast information about the vessel, such as its name or call sign, dimensions, type, position (derived from a global navigation system), course, speed, heading, navigation status and other pertinent navigation data. This information is continually updated, near real-time, and, received by all AIS-equipped stations in its vicinity. The advantage of this automatic exchange of information is that it is accessible to all, tailored to the mariner's needs, and greatly reduces voice radio exchanges.

Our AIS data are received via an antenna on top of Bldg N-159 at NASA's Wallops Flight Facility. The data processed by an AIS receiver and the NMEA sentences recorded by a dedicated PC. The data are ingested into the CODAAC where custom software decodes the NMEA strings and creates a parsed text file. The parsed text file is then read by a custom PHP program to create the Google Earth KML browse Products.

See the + Main USGC AIS Site for more information.

Last Map Image

Last Updated : Mon Dec 10 23:27:43 2012

AIS Detected Vessel Summary

    The linked page contains a list of all vessels detected to date. Links on that page point to vessel pages which display a detection history for the selected vessel.

    + Vessel Table

AIS Data Availability Summary

    The link below points to an index page of data availability since October 2006. The index page contains links to yearly indices, monthly indices, and daily data pages.

    + Data Availability Index

AIS Daily (Last 30 Days) Table