Real-Time Vessel Tracking: The Benefits and Use Cases
Real-time vessel tracking is a technology that allows businesses and individuals to monitor the movements of ships and boats in near real time. This is made possible through the use of vessel tracking systems, which use a combination of GPS, satellite, and other technologies to accurately locate and track vessels as they move across the globe.
The Benefits of Real-Time Vessel Tracking
There are many benefits to using real-time vessel tracking, including:
- Improved Efficiency: Real-time vessel tracking allows businesses to accurately track their ships and boats, optimizing operations, reducing delay risks, and enhancing overall efficiency.
- Enhanced Safety: By monitoring ship movements in real time, businesses can improve safety, prevent accidents, and quickly respond to any arising issues.
- Better Asset Management: Tracking ships and boats in real time gives businesses a clearer understanding of their assets’ status and condition, aiding in informed maintenance and repair decisions.
Use Cases for Real-Time Vessel Tracking
There are many different use cases for real-time vessel tracking, including:
Shipping and Logistics: Crucial for businesses in shipping and logistics, real-time vessel tracking optimizes routes and ensures timely delivery of goods globally.
Offshore Oil and Gas: In the offshore oil and gas sector, this tracking optimizes operations and minimizes accident risks by monitoring vessel movements.
Recreational Boating: For recreational boaters, real-time tracking provides safety and security by allowing them to monitor their boats’ locations continuously.
Using a Vessel API to Access Real-Time Tracking Data
One way that businesses and individuals can access real-time vessel tracking is through the use of a vessel API (Application Programming Interface). A vessel API is a set of tools and protocols that allows developers to build applications that can access and use data from a vessel tracking system. By using a vessel API, businesses and individuals can build custom applications that can track the movements of their ships and boats in real-time, giving them greater control and visibility over their operations.
- Definition of a vessel API: A vessel API is a set of tools and protocols that allows developers to build applications that can access and use data from a vessel tracking system.
- Building custom applications using a vessel API: By using a vessel API, businesses and individuals can build custom applications that can track the movements of their ships and boats in real-time, giving them greater control and visibility over their operations.
What’s the real-time data available?
Through the API subscription, you can track vessels in real-time and find data such as:
- uuid: A unique identifier for the ship, often used to distinguish it from other vessels.
- name: The name of the ship, in this case, “MAERSK CHENNAI”.
- mmsi: Maritime Mobile Service Identity, a unique number assigned to a ship for identification by radio communications.
- imo: International Maritime Organization number, another unique identifier for vessels.
- eni: European Number of Identification, primarily for inland waterways vessels (not applicable in this case, hence null).
- country_iso: The ISO country code for the ship’s registration, “SG” indicates Singapore.
- type: The general type of the ship, here it is “Cargo – Hazard A (Major)” indicating a major cargo vessel capable of carrying hazardous materials.
- type_specific: A more specific description of the ship type, “Container Ship” in this case.
- lat: The latitude coordinate of the ship’s current position.
- lon: The longitude coordinate of the ship’s current position.
- speed: The current speed of the ship in knots.
- course: The current course or direction the ship is heading, measured in degrees.
- navigational_status: The operational status of the ship, here it is “Under Way using engine” indicating the ship is moving powered by its engine.
- heading: The direction in which the ship is pointed, measured in degrees.
- destination: The intended destination of the ship, “TANGER MED” in this case.
- last_position_epoch: The time of the ship’s last reported position in epoch time.
- last_position_UTC: The time of the ship’s last reported position in Coordinated Universal Time (UTC).
API Response Example:
How to start using real-time vessel tracking API?
Once you have signed up for an account, you will need to obtain an API key. This can be done by visiting the API keys section in your account settings and generating a new key. The API key will be used to authenticate your requests when using IMO API in your projects.
After you have obtained your API key, you can start using IMO API in your projects. This can be done by following the instructions and examples provided in the IMO API documentation, which can be found on the API reference.
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