Sea pollution is increasing rapidly as ghost nets and plastic are seen travelling through the world’s oceans. Marine debris is hazardous not only for the the people making a living by the oceans, but also for the marine life. To save the oceans a California-based cargo ship named ‘Kwai’ collected 40 tonnes of plastics from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch and docked in a Konolulu, Hawaii Harbour.
The European satellite-navigation system, Galileo, remains offline as it suffered an outage on July 12, which was described as a technical incident regarding its ground infrastructure. Engineers are working to fix the problem, but as of now there is no update regarding when the service will resume.
On the occasion of the International Day of the Seafarer on 25 June, a total of 14 maritime organizations sent a formal letter to the US Coast Guard Commandant Karl Schultz, requesting the issue of ‘deliberate interference’ with America’s GPS to be resolved.
The United States Maritime Administration (MARAD) issued the US Maritime Advisory No. 2019-005 regarding Global Positioning System (GPS) interference in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea and Red Sea. Therefore, the Republic of the Marshall Islands Maritime Administrator urges all RMI-flagged vessels transiting the designated areas listed in the below Advisory to exercise caution.
In the past and for centuries, sailors used the constellations, sun, and moon to navigate to distant shores. Today, all that’s needed is a device called a GPS receiver. GPS stands for Global Positioning System, and it lets us know where we are and where we are going anywhere on Earth.
C4ADS, a non-profit analytic group, launched a report according to which Russia is spoofing GPS signals. After a year of research ‘Above Us Only Stars – Exposing GPS spoofing in Russia and Syria’ report highlights that the Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) attacks are emerging as a disruptive and strategic threat.
AMSA informed that on April 6th, the GPS week counter rolls over and resets to zero. This change may affect Industrial Control Systems and Critical Infrastructure owners and operators. It could also lead to log time stamp information, loss of communication between devices, inability to authenticate multi-factor authentication, or the ability to log in to computers.
The UK Maritime & Coastguard Agency informed operators that use GPS for both position and UTC, that the GPS Week Number will be rolling over for the second time, on April 6th, 2019. This could lead stand-alone GPS receivers and systems using GPS chips, to produce data that is 19.7 years either in the past or future, thus generating errors in both the GPS position and time.
Maritime Safety Victoria has partnered with AMSA to urge boaters and paddlers to carry a distress beacon. Carrying a means of calling for help when out on the water is standard for most boaters and many paddlers, however many believe that a mobile phone and/or hand-held radio are enough. One of the greatest risks to boaters and paddlers is unexpectedly entering the water, and then not being able to get back onto their vessel or call for help.
SpaceX will launch three satellites that will scan the world for radio signals of dark ships. The satellites belong to a startup called HawkEye 360 and aim to help monitor global activity in the oceans using geospatial information.
Seafarers Stories: Capt. Dimitrios Liakakos, Master27/03/2020
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