Section 3. General Application Principles

International organizations suggest that the following principles of implementation apply when a national authority plans on using AIS AtoN.

  • The commissioning of AIS AtoN shall be in accordance with SOLAS Chapter V/13 on the establishment and operation of aids to navigation, and shall be done so as to not affect the main purpose of the AIS collision avoidance (transmission between ships).
  • It is important to consider that not all types of vessels and watercraft are equipped to issue and receive AIS messages. In addition, some SOLAS vessels are equipped with only the Minimum Keyboard Display (MKD) that shows only alphanumeric information.
  • It is important to consider the potential for confusion between the physical AtoN’s charted position and the position of the dynamically represented AIS AtoN symbol.
  • Virtual AIS AtoN must not be used to permanently mark an object for which a physical AtoN can be used. However, under certain circumstances, they may be used in the long term, or even permanently, to mark objects or chart details in locations where the deployment of physical aids would be difficult or impossible.

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