How to look up an MMSI with API?

API Knowledge zone, Maritime API

MMSI lookup API allows you to find vessels’ MMSI number by running an API request. When it comes to vessel tracking, an identifier like MMSI or IMO is important information that users of vessel tracking services must know. It can be a little bit problematic to track a specific vessel without knowing the MMSI or the IMO.

However, the good news is, with the evolution of technology, some of the maritime data providers developed the features of their services and created a new method so the user can look up an MMSI of a vessel through API. 

For that, we answer questions that you may have in the article below and provide you with a solution on how to look up an MMSI.

What is the difference between AIS and MMSI?

An AIS is a transponder that transmutes the information received from a vessel whilst the MMSI is a unique identifier assigned to a vessel which means one vessel has one MMSI number.
The AIS system uses the MMSI to identify a vessel.
Before delivery to the end user, each AIS transponder is programmed with the MMSI number assigned to the vessel on which it will be installed. The MMSI number must be accurately programmed and updated in every device that uses it. The vessel’s MMSI number is automatically transmitted while providing basic vessel position reporting.


What is the difference between MMSI and IMO?

As the MMSI number is a unique number to identify a vessel, the IMO serves the same purposes.
The IMO (International Maritime Organisation), in 1987, introduced a ship identification system to improve maritime safety and prevent fraud at sea. Each vessel is assigned a unique reference number. Indeed, the number is permanently attached to the hull, so it does not change regardless of the name, flag, or owner of the vessel.

How to look up an MMSI using API?

Using a simple API request, you can look up the MMSI of any vessel available in the Datalastic database.

Utilizing our vessel finder API, you can search all the vessels available searching by name, the API allows you to find all the vessels with that name and from there you can filter and choose your required vessel.

We provide our customers with an easy way to get different vessel data through our API services.
The Vessel Finder API endpoint, presents detailed data about vessels including the MMSI or the IMO.


You can also find:

  • Vessel name
  • IMO
  • MMSI
  • UUID
  • Call Sign
  • Country
  • Type
  • Subtype
  • Draft
  • TEU unit of cargo capacity
  • Deadweight
  • Liquid gas capacity
  • Length
  • Breadth
  • Average draught
  • Maximum draught
  • Average speed
  • Maximum speed
  • Year built
  • Homeport
  • Activity status.

The API will save you time from checking on the internet or searching on an online map about vessel details, which can be tricky and sometimes can lead you to the wrong data.

Unlike the API, the vessel API became accessible in under 3 clicks.

The optional feature is that you can do research using the name or the type of the vessel, country_iso and the API will show you results in just a few seconds about those vessels including MMSI and the IMO number.

Vessel Finder API Response Example:

You can get your API key in less than three minutes.

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