Class B AIS, U.S. gets it last?
The good folks at Shine Micro sent over an update on their own Class B AIS product, RadarPlus, and the general state of the category:
* RadarPlus really exists, units licensed for experimental use are in the field (right), and test results are “very pleasing.” (Though, no surprise, receiver sensitivity does really matter with these 2 watt units; more on that in September).
* However, “dealer programming of the MMSI is definitely coming for North American users”, and “The FCC can be expected to take a minimum of 4 months to digest all the comments they are receiving on the latest ‘Further Notice of Proposed Rule Making and Fourth Memorandum Opinion and Order’” (in .pdf here).
* Which is why Shine isn’t currently predicting “any date for FCC approval of AIS Class B”, but does “like Comar and True Heading, plan on shipping units internationally in late October.”
I searched through that .pdf above, plus the FCC site, for more on this MMSI/Class B business, but without success. Anyone? It might also be interesting to see who has applied for Class B licenses.
I found some mention of AIS class B MMSI programming in FCC 06-108, section 4C, paragraph 64 (page 45).
They say “We seek comments regarding means which could be employed to ensure that userprogrammed
as well as dynamic data on AIS units used on non-compulsory ships is accurate.”
That’s all I saw.