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= AIVDM/AIVDO protocol decoding =
Eric S. Raymond <esr@thyrsus.com>
v1.24, May 2010
This document is mastered in asciidoc format. If you are reading it in HTML,
you can find the original at http://gpsd.berlios.de/AIVDM.txt[]
== Introduction ==
This is a description of how to decode AIVDM/AIVDO sentences. It
collects and integrates information from publicly available sources
and is intended to assist developers of open-source software for
interpreting these messages.
AIVDM/AIVDO sentences are emitted by receivers for AIS, the marine
Automatic Identification System. AIS transmitters are fitted to
vessels, navigation markers, and ccertain types of shore station. They
periodically squawk their position and course (if applicable), using
TDMA (Time Division Multiple Access) technology similar to the way
cellphones do to avoid mutual interference. AIS receivers make this data
available for navigation, anti-collision systems, and other uses.
The International Maritime Organization's (IMO) International
Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) reqires operating AIS
transmitters on all international cargo vessels of more than 300 tons
displacement, all cargo vessels of more than 500 tons displacement,
and all passenger vessels; see <<SOLAS>> for details. Individual
maritime nations may have stricter and more detailed rules: for those
obtaining in U.S. waters, see <<US-REQUIREMENTS>>.
AIS receivers report ASCII data packets over serial or USB lines,
using the NMEA 0183 data format and physical network standards. AIS
packets have the introducer "!AIVDM" or "!AIVDO"; AIVDM packets are
reports from other ships and AIVDO packets are reports from your own
ship.
A lengthy description of AIS, focusing on the goals and history of the
system, but not describing the data protocols in any detail, can be
found at <<AIS>>.
== Standards ==
Multiple standards bear on the AIVDM/AIVDO format. This document
exists because assembling them into a complete picture is both
technically difficult and impeded by legal barriers.
ITU Recommendation M.1371, "Technical Characteristics for a Universal
Shipborne Automatic Identification System Using Time Division Multiple
Access" <<ITU1371>>, issued in 2001, describes the bit-level format of
AIS radio messages. It is proprietary, expensive, and surrounded by
attack lawyers. I have not looked at it.
ITU-R M.1371 is expanded and clarified by "IALA Technical
Clarifications on Recommendation ITU-R M.1371-1" <<IALA>>, which
is freely available.
There have been two minor revisions of ITU-R M.1371 since it was
originally issued. These add interpretations to packet bitfields that
were previously marked "spare" and "regional reserved". I have not
seen these either, but have been passed information on them.
The ASCII format for AIVDM/AIVDO representations of AIS radio messages
seems to have been set by IEC-PAS 61162-100, "Maritime navigation and
radiocommunication equipment and systems" <<IEC-PAS>>. It is
proprietary and I have not looked at it. Various public sources
indicate that it has been "harmonized" with some version of NMEA 0183
<<NMEA>>, which I also have not looked at because it too is
proprietary and expensive, and surrounded by even more rapacious
attack lawyers.
== Information Sources ==
Together, the the IALA Technical Clarifications at <<IALA>> and the
Coast Guard's AIS pages at <<NAVCEN>> describe AIS message payloads
almost completely. The detail information on payload formats in this
document is mostly derived from these.
Kurt Schwehr is a research scientist at the Center for Coastal and
Ocean Mapping at the University of New Hamphire. Much of his research
involves AIS. His work blog at <<Schwehr>> contains sample messages
and descriptions of AIS operation in the wild that shed light on
various obscure corners of the specification. He has explained the
otherwise undocumented Repeat Indicator field and USCG extended AIVDM
to me by email. He also communicated some critical information from
<<IEC-PAS>>, and supplied information about new messages and fields in
ITU-1371-3.
Descriptions of messages 25 and 26 are based on AIS transceiver vendor
documentation forwarded to me by a source wishing to remain anonymous.
Should you set out to write a decoder using this document, you are
likely to find that one of your challenges is finding enough AIS
packet data to make an effective regression test -- especially if you
live out of line of sight of any ship traffic and would get nothing
from running an AIS receiver. Fortunately, various AIS sites offer
live feeds over the Internet that aggregate AIS streams from all over
the world. Some charge subscriptions; others offer time-delayed access
for free and charge for a real-time feed. Still others are pool sites;
you join by contributing your feed and receive all feeds.
AIS Hub (<<<AISHUB>>>) is a free, public AIS feed pool. It provides
exchange of AIS data in raw NMEA format; all AISHub members share
their own received AIS data and receive the merged feed from all other
participating parties. It is open-source friendly, offering a Linux
port in source of its software for collecting and forwarding AIS
data. Peter Stoyanov and the other AIS Hub principals have generously
donated a live feed to the GPSD project despite the fact that I live
60 miles inland and cannot send them anything interesting.
Some of what this document explains about the quirks of real-world
encoders comes from examples provided by Kurt Schwehr. Other such
information, especially for the less common sentences, comes from
inspection of sentences forwarded to me from AIS Hub by various
interested parties, and more recently from AIS Hub itself.
== Improving This Document ==
To avoid copyright difficulties, I rely only on freely redistributable
public documents and paraphrased reports from people who have seen the
relevant proprietary standards. If you are such a person, please help
by reporting the following to be included in future versions of this
document:
* Sample sentences of types 16-17, 22-23, and 25-26 together with
decoded dumps of the field values. Please note that sample
sentences not accompanied by field dumps are *not* useful; I
can get plenty of those.
== Open-Source Implementations ==
The http://gpsd.berlios.de/[GPSD project] ships an AIVDM/AIVDO
sentence decoder as part of the daemon. This document was developed to
be the specification for it, and it will decode all sentence type
described herein.
The source-code repository of the GPSD project holds a conforming
standalone Python decoder, ais.py, that is not included in shipped
releases. It may be useful for developers working in that language.
<<Schwehr>> includes links to a collection of Python scripts for
decoding and analyzing AIVDM sentences. Kurt Schwehr warns that this
is research code rather than a production tool.
There is a http://gnuais.sourceforge.net/[GNU AIS] project at
SourceForge. It seems intended primarily to work directly
with AIS radios.
There's a http://rl.se/aivdm[web form] that does sentence decoding.
It only understands message types 1-4.
== AIVDM/AIVDO Sentence Layer ==
AIVDM/AIVDO is a two-layer protocol. The outer layer is a variant of
NMEA 0183, the ancient standard for data interchange in marine
navigation systems; NMEA 0183 is described at <<NMEA>>.
Here is a typical AIVDM data packet:
--------------------------------------------------------------------
!AIVDM,1,1,,B,177KQJ5000G?tO`K>RA1wUbN0TKH,0*5C
--------------------------------------------------------------------
And here is what the fields mean:
Field 1, !AIVDM, identifies this as an AIVDM packet.
Field 2 (1 in this example) is the count of fragments in the currently
accumulating message. The payload size of each sentence is limited by
NMEA 0183's 82-character maximum, so it is sometimes required to split
a payload over several fragment sentences.
Field 3 (1 in this example) is the fragment number of this
sentence. It will be one-based. A sentence with a fragment count of
1 and a fragment number of 1 is complete in itself.
Field 4 (empty in this example) is a sequential message ID for
multi-sentence messages.
Field 5 (B in this example) is a radio channel code. AIS uses the high
side of the duplex from two VHF radio channels: AIS Channel A is
161.975Mhz (87B); AIS Channel B is 162.025Mhz (88B).
Field 6 (177KQJ5000G?tO`K>RA1wUbN0TKH in this example) is the data
payload. We'll describe how to decode this in later sections.
Field 7 (0) is the number of fill bits requires to pad the data
payload to a 6 bit boundary, ranging from 0 to 5. Equivalently,
subtracting 5 from this tells how many least significant bits of the
last 6-bit nibble in the data payload should be ignored. Note that
this pad byte has a tricky interaction with the <<<ITU-1371>>>
requirement for byte alignment in over-the-air AIS messages; see the
detailed discussion of message lengths and alignment in a later
section.
The \*-separated suffix (\*5C) is the NMEA 0183 data-integrity checksum
for the sentence, preceded by "*". It is computed on the entire
sentence including the AIVDM tag but excluding the leading "!".
For comparison, here is an example of a multifragment sentence with a
nonempty message ID field:
--------------------------------------------------------------------
!AIVDM,2,1,3,B,55P5TL01VIaAL@7WKO@mBplU@<PDhh000000001S;AJ::4A80?4i@E53,0*3E
!AIVDM,2,2,3,B,1@0000000000000,2*55
--------------------------------------------------------------------
== AIVDM/AIVDO Payload Armoring ==
The data payload is an ASCII-encoded bit vector. Each character
represents six bits of data. To recover the six bits, subtract 48
from the ASCII character value; if the result is greater than 40
subtract 8. According to <<IEC-PAS>>, the valid ASCII characters for
this encoding begin with "0" (64) and end with "w" (87); however, the
intermediate range "X" (58) to "\_" (95) is not used.
.ASCII payload armoring
[width="25%",frame="topbot",options="header"]
|======================================
| Char |ASCII |Decimal |Bits
|"0" | 48 | 0 |000000
|"1" | 49 | 1 |000001
|"2" | 50 | 2 |000010
|"3" | 51 | 3 |000011
|"4" | 52 | 4 |000100
|"5" | 53 | 5 |000101
|"6" | 54 | 6 |000110
|"7" | 55 | 7 |000111
|"8" | 56 | 8 |001000
|"9" | 57 | 9 |001001
|":" | 58 |10 |001010
|";" | 59 |11 |001011
|"<" | 60 |12 |001100
|"=" | 61 |13 |001101
|">" | 62 |14 |001110
|"?" | 63 |15 |001111
|"@" | 64 |16 |010000
|"A" | 65 |17 |010001
|"B" | 66 |18 |010010
|"C" | 67 |19 |010011
|"D" | 68 |20 |010100
|"E" | 69 |21 |010101
|"F" | 70 |22 |010110
|"G" | 71 |23 |010111
|"H" | 72 |24 |011000
|"I" | 73 |25 |011001
|"J" | 74 |26 |011010
|"K" | 75 |27 |011011
|"L" | 76 |28 |011100
|"M" | 77 |29 |011101
|"N" | 78 |30 |011110
|"O" | 79 |31 |011111
|"P" | 80 |32 |100000
|"Q" | 81 |33 |100001
|"R" | 82 |34 |100010
|"S" | 83 |35 |100011
|"T" | 84 |36 |100100
|"U" | 85 |37 |100101
|"V" | 86 |38 |100110
|"W" | 87 |39 |100111
|"`" | 96 |40 |101000
|"a" | 97 |41 |101001
|"b" | 98 |42 |101010
|"c" | 99 |43 |101011
|"d" |100 |44 |101100
|"e" |101 |45 |101101
|"f" |102 |46 |101110
|"g" |103 |47 |101111
|"h" |104 |48 |110000
|"i" |105 |49 |110001
|"j" |106 |50 |110010
|"k" |107 |51 |110011
|"l" |108 |52 |110100
|"m" |109 |53 |110101
|"n" |110 |54 |110110
|"o" |111 |55 |110111
|"p" |112 |56 |111000
|"q" |113 |57 |111001
|"r" |114 |58 |111010
|"s" |115 |59 |111011
|"t" |116 |60 |111100
|"u" |117 |61 |111101
|"v" |118 |62 |111110
|"w" |119 |63 |111111
|======================================
Concatenate all six-bit quantities found in the payload, MSB first.
This is the binary payload of the sentence.
== AIS Payload Data Types ==
Data in AIS message payloads (what you get after undoing the AIVDM/AIVDO
armoring) is encoded as bitfields in the sentence. Bitfields may be
interpreted in one of the following ways:
- Signed or unsigned integer
- Float (scaled from signed integer)
- Flag or boolean
- Index into a controlled vocabulary
- Reserved bits
- Spare bits
- Strings
Numeric bitfields are interpreted as big-endian twos-complement
integers; when signed, the sign bit is the highest.
Float fields usually have an associated divisor which should be applied
to convert to the correct units. In one case, the ROT field in message
types 1-3, the scaling operation involves a more laborate formula.
Flags are encoded as 1 for true/yes/on, 0 for false/no/off.
Indices into controlled vocabularies are numeric bitfields which
must be interpreted using per-field string lists specified in the
standards.
Spare fields generally seem to have been inserted in order to put
certain field starts on 8-bit boundaries, and should be ignored. Decoders
should not, however, assume that spare fields will be all zeroes.
Reserved fields should not be ignored, as they may be assigned for
extension data in minor revisions of the AIS standard; it is noted in
the message descriptions where this has already occurred. It is good
practice for a decoder to make reserved fields available to client
applications as uninterpreted bitfields.
Character-string fields within AIS messages are encoded in a
special way, referred to as "six-bit" in the tables below. Each
six-bit nibble maps to an ASCII character. Nibbles 0-31 map to the
characters "@" ( ASCII 64) through "\_" (ASCII 95) respectively;
nibbles 32-63 map to characters " " (ASCII 32) though "?" (ASCII
63). Lowercase ASCII letters, the backtick, right and left curly
brackets, pipe bar, tilde and DEL cannot be encoded.
.Sixbit ASCII
[width="25%",frame="topbot"]
|==========================================================================================
|000000 | 0 |"@" |010000 |16 |"P" |100000 |32 |" " |110000 |48 |"0"
|000001 | 1 |"A" |010001 |17 |"Q" |100001 |33 |"!" |110001 |49 |"1"
|000010 | 2 |"B" |010010 |18 |"R" |100010 |34 |""" |110010 |50 |"2"
|000011 | 3 |"C" |010011 |19 |"S" |100011 |35 |"\#" |110011 |51 |"3"
|000100 | 4 |"D" |010100 |20 |"T" |100100 |36 |"$" |110100 |52 |"4"
|000101 | 5 |"E" |010101 |21 |"U" |100101 |37 |"%" |110101 |53 |"5"
|000110 | 6 |"F" |010110 |22 |"V" |100110 |38 |"&" |110110 |54 |"6"
|000111 | 7 |"G" |010111 |23 |"W" |100111 |39 |"\'" |110111 |55 |"7"
|001000 | 8 |"H" |011000 |24 |"X" |101000 |40 |"(" |111000 |56 |"8"
|001001 | 9 |"I" |011001 |25 |"Y" |101001 |41 |")" |111001 |56 |"9"
|001010 |10 |"J" |011010 |26 |"Z" |101010 |42 |"\*" |111010 |58 |":"
|001011 |11 |"K" |011011 |27 |"[" |101011 |43 |"\+" |111011 |59 |";"
|001100 |12 |"L" |011100 |28 |"{backslash}" |101100 |44 |"," |111100 |60 |"<"
|001101 |13 |"M" |011101 |29 |"]" |101101 |45 |"-" |111101 |61 |"="
|001110 |14 |"N" |011110 |30 |"\^" |101110 |46 |"." |111110 |62 |">"
|001111 |15 |"O" |011111 |31 |"\_" |101111 |47 |"/" |111111 |63 |"?"
|==========================================================================================
According to the standard, trailing unused characters in six-bit
fields will be represented by "@" (six-bit zero); however, real-world
encoders are not careful about this and often have nonzero garbage
after the "@". The terminating "@" should not be considered part of
the text, and any non-"@" characters after it should be discarded. It
is also common to space-fill short fields such as ship and station
name, so a decoder should strip trailing spaces after stripping
at-signs and the garbage after them.
Trailing string fields are often specified as "up to" a certain number of bits.
Decoders should be prepared to handle any field length up to that
number, including zero.
== AIS Payload Interpretation ==
Note that many sources use 1-origin numbering for the bits. We'll
use 0-origin in this document.
The message type names are somewhat variable across different public
sources. Whatever ITU-1371 says should be considered authoritative,
but the variations I have seen appear to have no practical consequences.
The first 6 bits of the payload (0-5) are the message type. Message
types are as follows:
.Message types
[width="50%",frame="topbot"]
|======================================================
|01 |Position Report Class A
|02 |Position Report Class A (Assigned schedule)
|03 |Position Report Class A (Response to interrogation)
|04 |Base Station Report
|05 |Ship and Voyage data
|06 |Addressed Binary Message
|07 |Binary Acknowledge
|08 |Binary Broadcast Message
|09 |Standard SAR Aircraft Position Report
|10 |UTC and Date Inquiry
|11 |UTC and Date Response
|12 |Addressed Safety Related Message
|13 |Safety Related Acknowledge
|14 |Safety Related Broadcast Message
|15 |Interrogation
|16 |Assigned Mode Command
|17 |GNSS Binary Broadcast Message
|18 |Standard Class B CS Position Report
|19 |Extended Class B Equipment Position Report
|20 |Data Link Management
|21 |Aid-to-Navigation Report
|22 |Channel Management
|23 |Group Assignment Command
|24 |Class B CS Static Data Report
|25 |Binary Message, Single Slot
|26 |Binary Message, Multiple Slot
|======================================================
In normal operation, an AIS transceiver will broadcast a position report
(type 1, 2, or 3) every 2 to 10 seconds depending on the vessel's
speed while underway, and every 3 minutes while the vessel is at
anchor and stationary. It will send a type 5 identification every 6
minutes. (More detail is at <<IALA>>, part 2.3)
Class 6 is used for unencrypted structured extension messages by local
authorities such as the St. Lawrence Seaway and the U.S Coast Guard's
PAWSS.
Class 8 is in common use for private encrypted messages, such as
location transmission in military exercises. It is also used for
unencrypted structured extension messages by local authorities
such as the St. Lawrence Seaway and PAWSS.
Classes 12 and 14 are used for safety-related text messaging.
In practice, message types other than 1, 3, 4, 5, 18, and 24 are
unusual or rare; many AIS transmitters never emit them. As of
November 2009, an overnight capture of a full feed from <<<AISHUB>>>
shows no type 25 or type 26 messages at all.
An MMSI is a Mobile Marine Service Identifier, a unique 9-digit ID
for the ship's radio(s). The first three digits convey information
about the country in which the ID was issued <<ITU-MID>>.
Detailed descriptions of message types 1-24 follow. Message types 1-22
are derived from <<IALA>>. Message type 23 was decribed to me by Mike
Greene based on <<IEC62287>>. Message type 24 was described to me by
<<Schwehr>>, whose Python toolkit decodes it. Message types 25-26 are
reported by <<Schwehr>>, who observes they were added in Version 3 of
<<ITU1371>>.
The "Member" column in these tables is not derived from any of the ITU
standards or amendments. I have invented it in order to be able to
describe a lossless textual encoding of AIS sentences in JSON. These
names are also chosen for suitability as structure/object member names
in computer languages, so that application programming interfaces
across different languages can have a common and readily intelligible
set to use.
The field breakdowns in this document have been checked against live
decoded data rendered by known-good implementations for message types
1-15, 18-21, and 24. Described but unchecked are 16-17, 22-23, and
25-26.
Bit lengths and length ranges are given because decoders should check
them against the message type. Messages with correct checksums but the
wrong payload length for their type occur with about 0.3% frequency on
AISHub; if you don't reject these, your clients will see spurious
zeros or garbage.
=== Types 1, 2 and 3: Position Report Class A ===
Type 1, 2 and 3 messages share a common reporting structure for
navigational information; we'll call it the Common Navigation Block
(CNB). This is the information most likely to be of interest for
decoding software. Total of 168 bits, occupying one AIVDM sentence.
.Common Navigation Block
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 1-3
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |See below...
|8-37 |30 |MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-41 | 4 |Navigation Status |status |See table below
|42-49 | 8 |Rate of Turn (ROT) |turn |Signed integer: see below
|50-59 |10 |Speed Over Ground (SOG) |speed |Unsigned integer: see below
|60-60 | 1 |Position Accuracy |accuracy |See below
|61-88 |28 |Longitude |lon |Minutes/10000 (see below)
|89-115 |27 |Latitude |lat |Minutes/10000 (see below)
|116-127 |12 |Course Over Ground (COG) |course |Relative to true north,
| | | | |to 0.1 degree precision
|128-136 | 9 |True Heading (HDG) |heading |0 to 359 degrees,
| | | | |511 = not available
|137-142 | 6 |Time Stamp |second |Second of UTC timestamp
|143-144 | 2 |Maneuver Indicator |maneuver |See below
|145-147 | 3 |Spare | |Not used
|148-148 | 1 |RAIM flag |raim |See below
|149-167 |19 |Radio status |radio |See below
|==============================================================================
The Repeat Indicator is a directive to an AIS transceiver that this
message should be rebroadcast. This was intended as a way of getting
AIS messages around hills and other obstructions in coastal waters,
but is little used as base station coverage is more effective. It is
intended that the bit be incremented on each retransmission, to a
maximum of three hops. A value of 3 indicates "Do not repeat".
.Navigation status codes
[width="50%",frame="topbot"]
|=================================================================
|0 | Under way using engine
|1 | At anchor
|2 | Not under command
|3 | Restricted manoeuverability
|4 | Constrained by her draught
|5 | Moored
|6 | Aground
|7 | Engaged in Fishing
|8 | Under way sailing
|9 | Reserved for future amendment of Navigational Status for HSC
|10| Reserved for future amendment of Navigational Status for WIG
|11| Reserved for future use
|12| Reserved for future use
|13| Reserved for future use
|14| Reserved for future use
|15| Not defined (default)
|=================================================================
Turn rate is encoded as follows:
* 0 = not turning
* 1...126 = turning right at up to 708 degrees per minute or higher
* 1...-126 = turning left at up to 708 degrees per minute or higher
* 127 = turning right at more than 5deg/30s (No TI available)
* -127 = turning left at more than 5deg/30s (No TI available)
* 128 (80 hex) indicates no turn information available (default)
Values between 0 and 708 degrees/min coded by ROT~AIS~=4.733 *
SQRT(ROT~sensor~) degrees/min where ROT~sensor~ is the Rate of Turn as
input by an external Rate of Turn Indicator. ROT~AIS~ is rounded to
the nearest integer value. Thus, to decode the field value, square it
and divide by 4.733. Sign of the field value should be preserved when
squaring it, otherwise the left/right indication will be lost.
Speed over ground is in 0.1-knot resolution from 0 to 102 knots.
value 1023 indicates speed is not available, value 1022 indicates
102.2 knots or higher.
Position accuracy flag indicates the accuracy of the fix. A value of
1 indicates a DGPS-quality fix with an accuracy of < 10ms. 0, the
default, indicates an unaugmented GNSS fix with accuracy > 10m.
Longitude is given in in 1/10000 min; divide by 600000.0 to obtain
degrees. Values up to plus or minus 180 degrees, East = positive, West
\= negative. A value of 181 degrees (0x6791AC0 hex) indicates that
longitude is not available and is the default.
Latitude is given in in 1/10000 min; divide by 600000.0 to obtain
degrees. Values up to plus or minus 90 degrees, North = positive,
South = negative. A value of 91 degrees (0x3412140 hex) indicates
latitude is not available and is the default.
Course over ground will be 3600 (0xE10) if that data is not available.
Seconds in UTC timestamp should be 0-59, except for these special values:
* 60 if time stamp is not available (default)
* 61 if positioning system is in manual input mode
* 62 if Electronic Position Fixing System operates in estimated (dead
reckoning) mode,
* 63 if the positioning system is inoperative.
The Regional Reserved field is intended for use by local maritime
authorities. It is not known to be in any actual use up to 2009.
The Maneuver Indicator (143-144) may have these values:
* 0 = Not available (default)
* 1 = No special maneuver
* 2 = Special maneuver (such as regional passing arrangement)
The interpretation of bits 143-147 has been a bit unstable. In
<<IALA>>. and therefore in the original <<ITU1371>>, they were
described like this:
[width="50%",frame="topbot",options="header"]
|=================================
|Field |Len |Description
|143-145 | 3 |Regional Reserved
|146-147 | 2 |Spare
|=================================
The interpretation of 143-144 as a special maneuver field is new in
revision 3 of <<ITU1371>>.
The RAIM flag indicates whether Receiver Autonomous Integrity
Monitoring is being used to check the performance of the EPFD.
0 = RAIM not in use(default), 1 = RAIM in use. See <<RAIM>> for
a detailed description of this flag.
Bits 149-167 are diagnostic information for the radio system. Consult
<<IALA>> for detailed description of the latter.
=== Type 4: Base Station Report ===
This message is to be used by fixed-location base stations to
periodically report a position and time reference. Total of 168 bits,
occupying one AIVDM sentence.
The standard uses "EPFD" to designate any Electronic Position Fixing Device.
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 4
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |Unknown
|8-37 | 30 |MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-51 | 14 |Year |year |UTC, 1-999, 0 = N/A (default)
|52-55 | 4 |Month |month |1-12; 0 = N/A (default)
|56-60 | 5 |Day |day |1-31; 0 = N/A (default)
|61-65 | 5 |Hour |hour |0-23; 24 = N/A (default)
|66-71 | 6 |Minute |minute |0-59; 60 = N/A (default)
|72-77 | 6 |Second |second |0-59; 60 = N/A (default)
|78-78 | 1 |Fix quality |accuracy |As in Common Navigation Block
|79-106 | 28 |Longitude |lon |As in Common Navigation Block
|107-133 | 27 |Latitude |lat |As in Common Navigation Block
|134-137 | 4 |Type of EPFD |epfd |See below
|138-147 | 10 |Spare | |Not used
|148-148 | 1 |RAIM flag |raim |As for common navigation block
|149-167 | 19 |SOTDMA state |radio |As in same bits for Type 1
|==============================================================================
.EPFD fix type codes
[width="50%",frame="topbot",options="header"]
|===================================
|Code |Position Fix Type
|0 |Undefined (default)
|1 |GPS
|2 |GLONASS
|3 |Combined GPS/GLONASS
|4 |Loran-C
|5 |Chayka
|6 |Integrated navigation system
|7 |Surveyed
|8 |Galileo
|===================================
Note: though values 9-15 are marked "not used" in <<IALA>>, the EPFD
type value 15 (all field bits 1) is not uncommon in the wild; it
appears some receivers emit it as the Undefined value. Decoders should
be prepared to accept this.
=== Type 5: Ship static and voyage related data ===
Message has a total of 424 bits, occupying two AIVDM sentences.
In practice, the information in these fields (especially ETA and
destination) is not reliable, as it has to be hand-updated by
humans rather than gathered automatically from sensors.
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Encoding
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 5
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |Message repeat count
|8-37 | 30 |MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-39 | 2 |AIS Version |ais_version |0=<<ITU1371>>,
| | | | |1-3 = future editions
|40-69 | 30 |IMO Number |imo |Unsigned IMO ship ID number
|70-111 | 42 |Call Sign |callsign |7 six-bit characters
|112-231 |120 |Vessel Name |shipname |20 six-bit characters
|232-239 | 8 |Ship Type |shiptype |See table below
|240-248 | 9 |Dimension to Bow |to_bow |Unsigned integer: Meters
|249-257 | 9 |Dimension to Stern |to_stern |Unsigned integer: Meters
|258-263 | 6 |Dimension to Port |to_port |Unsigned integer: Meters
|264-269 | 6 |Dimension to Starboard |to_starboard |Unsigned integer: Meters
|270-273 | 4 |Position Fix Type |epfd |As in Type 4 EPSD codes
|274-277 | 4 |ETA month |month |1-12, 0=N/A (default)
|278-282 | 5 |ETA day |day |1-31, 0=N/A (default)
|283-287 | 5 |ETA hour |hour |0-23, 24=N/A (default)
|288-293 | 6 |ETA minute |minute |0-59, 60=N/A (default)
|294-301 | 8 |Draught |draught |Unsigned integer: Meters/10
|302-421 |120 |Destination |destination |20 6-bit characters
|422-422 | 1 |DTE |dte |0=Data terminal ready,
| | | | |1=Not ready (default)
|423-423 | 1 |Spare | |Not used
|==============================================================================
Ship dimensions will be 0 if not available. For the dimensions to bow
and stern, the special value 511 indicates 511 meters or greater; for
the dimensions to port and starboard, the special value 63 indicates
63 meters or greater.
.Codes for Ship Type
[width="50%",frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================
|Code |Ship & Cargo Classification
|0 |Not available (default)
|1-19 |Reserved for future use
|20 |Wing in ground (WIG), all ships of this type
|21 |Wing in ground (WIG), Hazardous category A
|22 |Wing in ground (WIG), Hazardous category B
|23 |Wing in ground (WIG), Hazardous category C
|24 |Wing in ground (WIG), Hazardous category D
|25 |Wing in ground (WIG), Reserved for future use
|26 |Wing in ground (WIG), Reserved for future use
|27 |Wing in ground (WIG), Reserved for future use
|28 |Wing in ground (WIG), Reserved for future use
|29 |Wing in ground (WIG), Reserved for future use
|30 |Fishing
|31 |Towing
|32 |Towing: length exceeds 200m or breadth exceeds 25m
|33 |Dredging or underwater ops
|34 |Diving ops
|35 |Military ops
|36 |Sailing
|37 |Pleasure Craft
|38 |Reserved
|39 |Reserved
|40 |High speed craft (HSC), all ships of this type
|41 |High speed craft (HSC), Hazardous category A
|42 |High speed craft (HSC), Hazardous category B
|43 |High speed craft (HSC), Hazardous category C
|44 |High speed craft (HSC), Hazardous category D
|45 |High speed craft (HSC), Reserved for future use
|46 |High speed craft (HSC), Reserved for future use
|47 |High speed craft (HSC), Reserved for future use
|48 |High speed craft (HSC), Reserved for future use
|49 |High speed craft (HSC), No additional information
|50 |Pilot Vessel
|51 |Search and Rescue vessel
|52 |Tug
|53 |Port Tender
|54 |Anti-pollution equipment
|55 |Law Enforcement
|56 |Spare - Local Vessel
|57 |Spare - Local Vessel
|58 |Medical Transport
|59 |Ship according to RR Resolution No. 18
|60 |Passenger, all ships of this type
|61 |Passenger, Hazardous category A
|62 |Passenger, Hazardous category B
|63 |Passenger, Hazardous category C
|64 |Passenger, Hazardous category D
|65 |Passenger, Reserved for future use
|66 |Passenger, Reserved for future use
|67 |Passenger, Reserved for future use
|68 |Passenger, Reserved for future use
|69 |Passenger, No additional information
|70 |Cargo, all ships of this type
|71 |Cargo, Hazardous category A
|72 |Cargo, Hazardous category B
|73 |Cargo, Hazardous category C
|74 |Cargo, Hazardous category D
|75 |Cargo, Reserved for future use
|76 |Cargo, Reserved for future use
|77 |Cargo, Reserved for future use
|78 |Cargo, Reserved for future use
|79 |Cargo, No additional information
|80 |Tanker, all ships of this type
|81 |Tanker, Hazardous category A
|82 |Tanker, Hazardous category B
|83 |Tanker, Hazardous category C
|84 |Tanker, Hazardous category D
|85 |Tanker, Reserved for future use
|86 |Tanker, Reserved for future use
|87 |Tanker, Reserved for future use
|88 |Tanker, Reserved for future use
|89 |Tanker, No additional information
|90 |Other Type, all ships of this type
|91 |Other Type, Hazardous category A
|92 |Other Type, Hazardous category B
|93 |Other Type, Hazardous category C
|94 |Other Type, Hazardous category D
|95 |Other Type, Reserved for future use
|96 |Other Type, Reserved for future use
|97 |Other Type, Reserved for future use
|98 |Other Type, Reserved for future use
|99 |Other Type, no additional information
|==============================================================
Note that garbage values greater than 99 are supposed to be unused,
but are not uncommon in the wild; AIS transmitters seem prone to put
garbage in this field when it's not explicitly set. Decoders should
treat these like value 0 rather than throwing an exception until and
unless the controlled vocabulary is extended to include the unknown
values.
=== Type 6: Addressed Binary Message ===
Message type 6 is an addressed point-to-point message with unspecified
binary payload. The St. Lawrence Seaway AIS system and the USG PAWSS
system use this payload for local extension messages. It is variable
in length up to a maximum of 1008 bits (up to 5 AIVDM sentence
payloads).
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 6
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 | 30 |Source MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-39 | 2 |Sequence Number |seqno |Unsigned integer 0-3
|40-69 | 30 |Destination MMSI |dest_mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|70 | 1 |Retransmit flag |retransmit |0 = no retransmission (default)
| | | | |1 = retransmitted
|71 | 1 |Spare | |Not used
|72-81 | 10 |Designated Area Code |dac |Unsigned integer
|82-87 | 6 |Functional ID |fid |Unsigned integer
|88 |920 |Data |data |Binary data
| | | | |May be shorter than 920 bits.
|==============================================================================
Interpretation of the binary payload is controlled by:
* The Designated Area Code, which is a jurisdiction code: 366 for the
United States. It uses the same encoding as the area designator in
MMMSIs; see <<ITU-MID>>. 1 designates international (ITU) messages.
* The FID, which is the Functional ID for a message subtype.
The following is a non-exhaustive list of DAC-FID pairs in use for
type 6:
|==============================================================================
| DAC |FID | Sub | Source | Status | Description
| 1 | 23 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | Area notice
| 1 | 28 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | Route info addressed
| 1 | 30 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | Text description addressed
|==============================================================================
DAC/FID pairs are assigned separately per message type.
=== Type 7: Binary Acknowledge ===
Message type 7 is a receipt acknowledgement to the senders of a
previous messages of type 6. Total length varies between 72 and 168
bits by 32-bit increments, depending on the number of destination
MMSIs included.
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 7
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 | 30 |Source MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-39 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|40-69 | 30 |MMSI number 1 |mmsi1 |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|70-71 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|62-101 | 30 |MMSI number 2 |mmsi2 |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|102-103 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|104-133 | 30 |MMSI number 3 |mmsi3 |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|134-135 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|136-165 | 30 |MMSI number 4 |mmsi4 |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|166-167 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|==============================================================================
=== Type 8: Binary Broadcast Message ===
Message type 8 is a broadcast message with unspecified binary payload.
The St. Lawrence Seaway AIS system and the USG PAWSS system use this
payload for local extension messages. It is variable in length up to a
maximum of 1008 bits (up to 5 AIVDM sentence payloads).
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 8
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 | 30 |Source MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-39 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|40-49 | 10 |Designated Area Code |dac |Unsigned integer
|50-55 | 6 |Functional ID |fid |Unsigned integer
|56 |952 |Data |data |Binary data
| | | | |May be shorter than 952 bits.
|==============================================================================
Interpretation of the binary payload is controlled by DAC/FID as in
message type 6. The following is a non-exhaustive list of DAC-FID
pairs in use for type 8:
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
| DAC |FID | Sub | Source | Status | Description
| 1 | 11 | | <<IMO236>> | Deprecated | Meteorological/Hydrological Data
| 1 | 12 | | <<IMO236>> | Deprecated | Dangerous cargo indication
| 1 | 13 | | <<IMO236>> | Deprecated | Fairway closed
| 1 | 14 | | <<IMO236>> | Deprecated | Tidal window
| 1 | 15 | | <<IMO236>> | Deprecated | Extended ship and voyage
| 1 | 16 | | <<IMO236>> | In use | Num persons on board
| 1 | 17 | | <<IMO236>> | In use? | VTS-Generated/Synthetic targets
| 1 | 18 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | Clearance time to enter port
| 1 | 19 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | Marine traffic signals
| 1 | 20 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | Berthing data
| 1 | 21 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | Weather obs from ship
| 1 | 22 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | area notice broadcast
| 1 | 24 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | Extended ship and voyage
| 1 | 25 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | Dangerous cargo
| 1 | 26 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | Environmental
| 1 | 27 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | Route info broadcast
| 1 | 29 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | Text description broadcast
| 1 | 31 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | Meteorological and Hydrological
| 1 | 32 | | <<NAV55>> | Proposed | Tidal Window
| 316 | 1 | 2 | <<SEAWAY>> | In use | Wind
| 316 | 1 | 1 | <<SEAWAY>> | In use | Weather station
| 316 | 1 | 3 | <<SEAWAY>> | In use | Water level
| 316 | 1 | 6 | <<SEAWAY>> | In use | Water flow
| 316 | 2 | 1 | <<SEAWAY>> | In use | Lockage Order
| 316 | 2 | 2 | <<SEAWAY>> | In use | Est. Lock Times
| 316 | 32 | 1 | <<SEAWAY>> | In use | Seaway Version Message
| ? | 1 | 4 | <<SEAWAY>> | ? | PAWS Hydro / Current
|==============================================================================
DAC/FID pairs are assigned separately per message type.
FID types 11-15 are being phased out and are not to be used after 1
Jan 2013. FID types 16 and 17 are in use; there are a proposed updates
for these in <<NAV55>>.
=== Type 9: Standard SAR Aircraft Position Report ===
Tracking information for search-and-rescue aircraft. Total number of
bits is 168.
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Encoding
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 9
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 |30 |MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-49 |12 |Altitude |alt |Unsigned integer: See below
|50-59 |10 |SOG |speed |Unsigned integer: See below
|60-60 | 1 |Position Accuracy |accuracy |See below
|61-88 |28 |Longitude |lon |Minutes/10000 (as in CNB)
|89-115 |27 |Latitude |lat |Minutes/10000 (as in CNB)
|116-127 |12 |Course Over Ground |course |Relative to true north to 0.1 degree
|128-133 | 6 |Time Stamp |second |Unsigned integer: UTC second.
|134-141 | 8 |Regional reserved |regional
|
|142-142 | 1 |DTE |dte |0=Data terminal ready,
| | | | |1=Data terminal not ready (default)
|143-145 | 3 |Spare | |Not used
|146-146 | 1 |Assigned |assigned |Assigned-mode flag
|147-147 | 1 |RAIM flag |raim |As for common navigation block
|148-167 |19 |Radio status |radio |See <<IALA>> for details.
|==============================================================================
Altitude is in meters. The special value 4095 indicates altitude is
not available; 4094 indicates 4094 meters or higher.
Speed over ground is in knots, not deciknots as in the common
navigation block; planes go faster. The special value 1023 indicates
speed not available, 1022 indicates 1022 knots or higher.
Position Accuracy, Longitude, Latitude, and Course over Ground
are encoded identically as in the common navigation block and
are even at the same bit offsets. Time stamp has the same special
values as in the common navigation block, but is at a different offset.
=== Type 10: UTC/Date Inquiry ===
Request for UTC/Date information from an AIS base station. Total
number of bits is 72.
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Encoding
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 9
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 |30 |Source MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-39 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|40-69 |30 |Destination MMSI |dest_mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|70-71 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|==============================================================================
=== Type 11: UTC/Date Response ===
Identical to message 4, with the semantics of a response to inquiry.
=== Type 12: Safety-Related Message ===
This is a point-to-point text message. The payload is interpreted as
six-bit text. This message is variable in length up to a maximum of
1008 bits (up to 5 AIVDM sentence payloads).
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 12
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 | 30 |Source MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-39 | 2 |Sequence Number |seqno |Unsigned integer 0-3
|40-69 | 30 |Destination MMSI |dest_mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|70 | 1 |Retransmit flag |retransmit |0 = no retransmission (default)
| | | | |1 = retransmitted
|71 | 1 |Spare | |Not used
|72 |936 |Text |text |1-156 chars of six-bit text.
| | | | |May be shorter than 936 bits.
|==============================================================================
Pragmatic note: On <<<AISHUB>>> the actual content of these messages is
highly variable, ranging from fairly plain English ("PLEASE REPORT TO
JOBOURG TRAFFIC CHANNEL 13") through snippets of tabular data ("PAX
589 FG 36 IX 74 MOTO 10 CREW 108+1" through what look like opaque
commercial codes ("EP285 IX46 FG3 DK8 PL56") to empty strings and
content that looks like line noise ("]XFD5D/\7`>PA!Q DX0??K?8?>D").
Such apparently garbled content does *not* mean there is an error in
your decoder. It may indicate faulty encoders, operator error, or even
the use of private encodings for non-ASCII character sets.
=== Type 13: Safety-Related Acknowledge ===
Message type 13 is a receipt acknowledgement to senders of
previous messages of type 12. The message layout is identical to
a type 7 Binary Acknowledge.
=== Type 14: Safety-Related Broadcast Message ===
This is a broadcast text message. The payload is interpreted as
six-bit text. This message is variable in length up to a maximum of
1008 bits (up to 5 AIVDM sentence payloads).
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 14
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 | 30 |Source MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-39 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|40 |968 |Text |text |1-161 chars of six-bit text.
| | | | |May be shorter than 968 bits.
|==============================================================================
Note: 161 * 6 = 966. <<IALA>> specifies 968 because over-the-air
messages are required to be padded to an 8-bit byte boundary by
<<<ITU1371>>>.
Also see the pragmatic note on message content attached to type 12; it
applies to type 14 messages as well.
=== Type 15: Interrogation ===
Message type 15 is used by a base station to query one or two other AIS
transceivers for status messages of specified types. "Source MMSI" is
the interrogating station. 88-160 bits depending on the number of queries.
This message is probably not interesting unless you are doing traffic
analysis of information flow in an AIS station network. The "slot offset"
members are a request for the response to interrogation to occupy
a particular time division in the TDMA packet layer.
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 15
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 | 30 |Source MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-39 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|40-69 | 30 |Interrogated MMSI |mmsi1 |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|70-75 | 6 |First message type |type1_1 |Unsigned integer
|76-87 | 12 |First slot offset |offset1_1 |Unsigned integer
|88-89 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|90-95 | 6 |Second message type |type1_2 |Unsigned integer
|96-107 | 12 |Second slot offset |offset1_2 |Unsigned integer
|108-109 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|110-139 | 30 |Interrogated MMSI |mmsi2 |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|140-145 | 6 |First message type |type2_1 |Unsigned integer
|146-157 | 12 |First slot offset |offset2_1 |Unsigned integer
|158-159 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|==============================================================================
There are four use cases for this message. A decoder must dispatch on
the length of the data packet to determine which it is seeing:
1. One station is interrogated for one message type. Length is 88 bits.
2. One station is interrogated for two message types, Length is 110
bits. There is a design error in the standard here; according to the
<<<ITU1371>>> requirement for padding to 8 bits, this should have been
112 with a 4-bit trailing spare field, and decoders should be prepared
to handle that length as well. See the discussion of byte alignment
elsewhere in this document for context.
3. Two stations are interrogated for one message type each. Length is
160 bits. The second message type and second slot offset associated
with the first queried MMSI should be zeroed.
4. One station is interrogated for two message types, and a second for
one message type. Length is 160 bits.
=== Type 16: Assigned Mode Command ===
Message type 16 is used by a base station with control authority to
configure the scheduling of AIS informational messages from
subordinate stations, either as a frquency per 10-minute interval or
by specifying the TDMA slot(s) offset on which those messages should
be transmitted. It is probably not of interest unless you are
studying the internal operation of an AIS base station network.
Length may be 96 or 144 bits.
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 16
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 | 30 |Source MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-39 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|40-69 | 30 |Destination A MMSI |mmsi1 |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|70-81 | 12 |Offset A |offset1 |See <<IALA>>
|82-91 | 10 |Increment A |increment1 |See <<IALA>>
|92-121 | 30 |Destination B MMSI |mmsi2 |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|122-133 | 12 |Offset B |offset2 |See <<IALA>>
|134-143 | 10 |Increment B |increment2 |See <<IALA>>
|=============================================================================
If the message is 96 bits long, it should be interpreted as an
assignment for a single station (92 bits) followed by 4 bits of
padding reserved for future use. If the message is 144 bits long it
should be interpreted as a channel assignment for two stations; no
padding follows.
When increment is zero, the offset field is interpreted as the
frequency with which the subordinate station should report per
10-minute interval. When increment is nonzero, reporting interval
is specified at the level of TDMA slot numbers; see <<IALA>> for the
detailed specification.
Note: While the 96-bit form of Type 16 is not uncommon, the 144-bit
form is extremely rare. As of March 2010 it has not been observed even
in long-duration samples from AISHub.
=== Type 17: GNSS Broadcast Binary Message ===
Message type 17 is used to broadcast differential corrections for GPS.
The data in the payload is intended to be passed directly to GPS
receivers capable of accepting such corrections. 80 to 816 bits
depending on payload size.
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 16
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 | 30 |Source MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-39 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|40-57 | 18 |Longitude |lon |Signed: minutes/10
|58-74 | 17 |Latitude |lat |Signed: minutes/10
|75-79 | 5 |Spare | |Not used - reserved
|80-815 |736 |Payload |data |DGNSS correction data
|==============================================================================
Nore that latitude and longitude are in units of a tenth of a minute;
sign interpretation and out-of-band values are as in the Common
Navigation Clock. (Note, however, that the hex representation of
the out-of-band values differs; it is 181 \* 60 \* 10 = 0x1a838 for
longitude, 91 \* 60 \* 10 = 0xd548 for latitude.)
The <<IALA>> description of the payload portion subfields has been
omitted, as it appears to be tied to the now obsolete RTCM2 protocol.
=== Type 18: Standard Class B CS Position Report ===
A less detailed report than types 1-3 for vessels using Class B
transmitters. Omits navigational status and rate of turn. Fields are
encoded as in the common navigation block. 168 bits total.
In <<IALA>> (and <<ITU1371>>) bits 141-145 were designated "Spare"; the
bit-flag semantics given here are from ITU-1371-3 and were
communicated by Kurt Schwehr. Kurt warns that "the spec does not do a
good job of explaining these fields... I don't think that I totally
understand these fields."
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 18
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 |30 |MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-45 | 8 |Regional Reserved |reserved
|
|46-55 |10 |Speed Over Ground |speed |As in common navigation block
|56-56 | 1 |Position Accuracy |accuracy |See below
|57-84 |28 |Longitude |lon |Minutes/10000 (as in CNB)
|85-111 |27 |Latitude |lat |Minutes/10000 (as in CNB)
|112-123 |12 |Course Over Ground |course |Relative to true north to 0.1 degree
|124-132 | 9 |True Heading |heading |0 to 359 degrees, 511 = N/A
|133-138 | 6 |Time Stamp |second |Second of UTC timestamp.
|139-140 | 2 |Regional reserved |regional
|
|141-141 | 1 |CS Unit |cs |0=Class B SOTDMA unit
| | | | |1=Class B CS (Carrier Sense) unit
|142-142 | 1 |Display flag |display |0=No visual display, 1=Has display
| | | | |(Probably not reliable.)
|143-143 | 1 |DSC Flag |dsc |If 1, unit is attached to a VHF
| | | | |voice radio with DSC capability.
|144-144 | 1 |Band flag |band |Base stations can command units
| | | | |to switch frequency. If this flag
| | | | |is 1, the unit can use any part
| | | | |of the marine channel.
|145-145 | 1 |Message 22 flag |msg22 |If 1, unit can accept a channel
| | | | |assignment via Message Type 22.
|146-146 | 1 |Assigned |assigned |Assigned-mode flag
|147-147 | 1 |RAIM flag |raim |As for common navigation block
|148-167 |20 |Radio status |radio |See <<IALA>> for details.
|==============================================================================
The radio status is 20 bits rather than 19 because an extra first bit
selects whether it should be interpretred as a SOTDMA or ITDMA state.
=== Type 19: Extended Class B CS Position Report ===
A slightly more detailed report than type 18 for vessels using Class B
transmitters. Omits navigational status and rate of turn. Fields are
encoded as in the common navigation block and the Type 5 message.
Note that until just before the reserved field at bit 139 this is
identical to message 18. 312 bits total.
In practice, the information in the ship name and dimension fields is
not reliable, as it has to be hand-entered by humans rather than
gathered automatically from sensors.
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 19
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 | 30 |MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-45 | 8 |Regional Reserved |reserved
|
|46-55 | 10 |Speed Over Ground |speed |As in Common Navigation Block
|56-56 | 1 |Position Accuracy |accuracy |See below
|57-84 | 28 |Longitude |lon |Minutes/10000 (as in CNB)
|85-111 | 27 |Latitude |lat |Minutes/10000 (as in CNB)
|112-123 | 12 |Course Over Ground |course |Relative to true north,
| | | | |units of 0.1 degrees
|124-132 | 9 |True Heading |heading |0 to 359 degrees,
| | | | |511 = N/A
|133-138 | 6 |Time Stamp |second |Second of UTC timestamp.
|139-142 | 4 |Regional reserved |regional
|
|143-262 |120 |Name |shipname |20 6-bit characters
|263-270 | 8 |Type of ship and cargo |shiptype |As in Message 5
|271-279 | 9 |Dimension to Bow |to_bow |Unsigned integer: Meters
|280-288 | 9 |Dimension to Stern |to_stern |Unsigned integer: Meters
|289-294 | 6 |Dimension to Port |to_port |Unsigned integer: Meters
|295-300 | 6 |Dimension to Starboard |to_starboard |Unsigned integer: Meters
|301-304 | 4 |Position Fix Type |epfd |As in Type 4 EPFD codes
|305-305 | 1 |RAIM flag |raim |As for Common Navigation Block
|306-306 | 1 |DTE |dte |0=Data terminal ready,
|307-307 | 1 |Assigned mode flag |assigned |See <<IALA>> for details
|308-311 | 4 |Spare | |Unused, should be zero
|==============================================================================
=== Type 20 Data Link Management Message ===
This message is used to pre-allocate TDMA slots within an AIS base
station network. It contains no navigational information, and is
unlikely to be of interest unless you are implementing or studying
an AIS base station network. Length varies from 72-160 depending on
the number of slot reservations (1 to 4) in the message.
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|===============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 20
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 |30 |MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-39 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|40-51 |12 |Offset number 1 |offset1 |Reserved offset number
|52-55 | 4 |Reserved slots |number1 |Consecutive slots
|56-58 | 3 |Time-out |timeout1 |Allocation timeout in minutes
|59-69 |11 |Increment |increment1 |Repeat increment
|70-81 |12 |Offset number 2 |offset2 |Reserved offset number
|82-85 | 4 |Reserved slots |number2 |Consecutive slots
|86-88 | 3 |Time-out |timeout2 |Allocation timeout in minutes
|89-99 |11 |Increment |increment2 |Repeat increment
|100-111 |12 |Offset number 3 |offset3 |Reserved offset number
|112-115 | 4 |Reserved slots |number3 |Consecutive slots
|116-118 | 3 |Time-out |timeout3 |Allocation timeout in minutes
|119-129 |11 |Increment |increment3 |Repeat increment
|130-141 |12 |Offset number 4 |offset4 |Reserved offset number
|142-145 | 4 |Reserved slots |number4 |Consecutive slots
|146-148 | 3 |Time-out |timeout4 |Allocation timeout in minutes
|149-159 |11 |Increment |increment4 |Repeat increment
|===============================================================================
See <<IALA>> for details on the meaning of these fields.
=== Type 21: Aid-to-Navigation Report ===
Identification and location message to be emitted by aids to
navigation such as buoys and lighthouses.
This message is unusual in that it varies in length depending on the
presence and size of the Name Extension field. May vary between 272
and 360 bits.
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 21
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 |30 |MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-42 | 5 |Aid type |aid_type |See Below
|43-162 1|120 |Name |name |Name of the aid to navigation
|163-163 | 1 |Position Accuracy |accuracy |As in Common Navigation Block
|164-191 |28 |Longitude |lon |Minutes/10000 (as in CNB)
|192-218 |27 |Latitude |lat |Minutes/10000 (as in CNB)
|219-227 | 9 |Dimension to Bow |to_bow |Unsigned integer: Meters
|228-236 | 9 |Dimension to Stern |to_stern |Unsigned integer: Meters
|237-242 | 6 |Dimension to Port |to_port |Unsigned integer: Meters
|243-248 | 6 |Dimension to Starboard |to_starboard |Unsigned integer: Meters
|249-252 | 4 |Type of EPFD |epfd |As in Message Type 4
|253-258 | 6 |UTC Second |second |As in Message Type 5
|259-259 | 1 |Off-Position Indicator |off_position |See Below
|260-267 | 8 |Regional reserved |regional |
|268-268 | 1 |RAIM flag |raim |As in Common Navigation Block
|269-269 | 1 |Virtual-aid flag |virtual_aid |See Below
|270-270 | 1 |Assigned-mode flag |assigned |See <<IALA>> for details
|271-271 | 1 |Spare | |Not used
|272-360 |88 |Name Extension | |See Below
|==============================================================================
According to <<IALA>>, the aid type field has values 1-15 for fixed
and 16-31 for floating aids to navigation. The detailed list is as follows:
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|====================================================================
|Code |Definition
|0 |Default, Type of Aid to Navigation not specified
|1 |Reference point
|2 |RACON (radar transponder marking a navigation hazard)
|3 |Fixed structure off shore, such as oil platforms, wind farms,
| |rigs. (Note: This code should identify an obstruction that is
| |fitted with an Aid-to-Navigation AIS station.)
|4 |Spare, Reserved for future use.
|5 |Light, without sectors
|6 |Light, with sectors
|7 |Leading Light Front
|8 |Leading Light Rear
|9 |Beacon, Cardinal N
|10 |Beacon, Cardinal E
|11 |Beacon, Cardinal S
|12 |Beacon, Cardinal W
|13 |Beacon, Port hand
|14 |Beacon, Starboard hand
|15 |Beacon, Preferred Channel port hand
|16 |Beacon, Preferred Channel starboard hand
|17 |Beacon, Isolated danger
|18 |Beacon, Safe water
|19 |Beacon, Special mark
|20 |Cardinal Mark N
|21 |Cardinal Mark E
|22 |Cardinal Mark S
|23 |Cardinal Mark W
|24 |Port hand Mark
|25 |Starboard hand Mark
|26 |Preferred Channel Port hand
|27 |Preferred Channel Starboard hand
|28 |Isolated danger
|29 |Safe Water
|30 |Special Mark
|31 |Light Vessel / LANBY / Rigs
|====================================================================
The name field is 6-bit ASCII. If this field is full (has no trailing
@ characters) the decoder should interpret the Name Extension field
later in the message (no more than 14 6-bit characters) and
concatenate it to this one to obtain the full name.
<<IALA>> describes bits 219-248 As "Dimension/Reference for Position",
implying that it is vessel dimensions as in message type 5.
The Off-Position Indicator is for floating Aids-to-Navigation only: 0
means on position; 1 means off position. Only valid if UTC second is equal to
or below 59.
The Virtual Aid flag is interpreted as follows: 0 = default = real Aid
to Navigation at indicated position; 1 = virtual Aid to
Navigation simulated by nearby AIS station.
If present, the Name Extension consists of packed six-bit ASCII
characters followed by 0-6 bits of padding to an 8-bit boundary. The
<<IALA>> description says "This parameter should be omitted when no
more than 20 characters for the name of the A-to-N are needed in
total. Only the required number of characters should be transmitted,
i.e. no @-character should be used." A decoder can deduce the bit length
of the name extension field by subtracting 272 from the total message
bit length.
=== Type 22: Channel Management ===
This message is broadcast by a competent authority (an AIS network
control base station) to set VHF parameters for an AIS coverage
region. Length is 168 bits.
This message contains no navigational information, and is unlikely to be of
interest unless you are implementing or studying an AIS base station
network.
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned integer: 22
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 |30 |MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-39 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|40-51 |12 |Channel A |channel_a |Channel number
|52-63 |12 |Channel B |channel_b |Channel number
|64-67 | 4 |Tx/Rx mode |txrx |Transmit/receive mode
|68-68 | 1 |Power |power |Low=0, high=1
|69-86 |18 |NE Longitude |ne_lon |Signed: NE longitude to 0.1 minutes
|87-103 |17 |NE Latitude |ne_lat |Signed: NE latitude to 0.1 minutes
|104-121 |18 |SW Longitude |sw_lon |Signed: SW longitude to 0.1 minutes
|122-138 |17 |SW Latitude |sw_lat |Signed: SW latitude to 0.1 minutes
|69-98 |30 |MMSI1 |dest1 |Unsigned: MMSI of destination 1
|104-133 |30 |MMSI2 |dest2 |Unsigned: MMSI of destination 2
|139-139 | 1 |Addressed |addressed |0=Broadcast, 1=Addressed
|140-140 | 1 |Channel A Band |band_a |0=Default, 1=12.5kHz
|141-141 | 1 |Channel B Band |band_b |0=Default, 1=12.5kHz
|142-144 | 3 |Zone size |zonesize |Size of transitional zone
|145-167 |23 |Spare | |Reserved for future use
|==============================================================================
The values of the channel_a and channel_b fields are ITU frequency
designators for channelas A and B. Normally these will be 2087 and
2088, the AIS 1 and AIS 2 frequencies of 87B (161.975 MHz) and 88B
(162.025 MHz) respectively. Regional authorities may set different
frequencies.
The txrx field encodes the same information as the 2-bit field txrx
field in message type 23; only the two low bits are used.
The power bit instructs designated receivers which power level to use.
If the message is broadcast (addressed field is 0), the ne_lon,
ne_lat, sw_lon, and sw_lat fields are the corners of a rectangular
jurisdiction area over which control parameters are to be set. If it
is addressed (addressed field is 1), the same span of data is
interpreted as two 30-bit MMSIs beginning at at bit offsets 69 and 104
respectively.
Note that the 'not available' values for longitude and latitudes
match the short ones used in message 17, not the long ones used in the
common navigation block and elsewhere.
The band fields control channel bandwidth for channels A and B, and
the zonesize field describes the size of the transition zone around the
control jurisdiction. The semantics of these fields are complicated,
controlling transmitter behavior as it moves between jurisdictions;
see <<IALA>> for full details.
=== Type 23: Group Assignment Command ===
This message is intended to be broadcast by a competent authority (an
AIS network-control base station) to set to set operational parameters
for all mobile stations in an AIS coverage region. Length is 160 bits.
This message contains no navigational information, and is unlikely to
be of interest unless you are implementing or studying an AIS base
station network.
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description |Member |Units
|0-5 | 6 |Message Type |type |Unsigned Integer: 23
|6-7 | 2 |Repeat Indicator |repeat |As in Common Navigation Block
|8-37 |30 |MMSI |mmsi |Unsigned Integer: 9 digits
|38-39 | 2 |Spare | |Not used
|40-57 |18 |NE Longitude |ne_lon |Same as broadcast type 22
|58-74 |17 |NE Latitude |ne_lat |Same as broadcast type 22
|75-92 |18 |SW Longitude |sw_lon |Same as broadcast type 22
|93-109 |17 |SW Latitude |sw_lat |Same as broadcast type 22
|110-113 | 4 |Station Type |station_type |Unsigned Integer, see below
|114-121 | 8 |Ship Type |ship_type |As for Message type 5
|122-143 |22 |Spare | |Not used
|144-145 | 2 |Tx/Rx Mode |txrx |Transmit/receive mode; see below,
|146-149 | 4 |Report Interval |interval |Station report interval; see below
|150-153 | 4 |Quiet Time |quiet |0 = none, 1-15 quiet time in minutes
|154-159 | 6 |Spare | |Not used
|==============================================================================
The target set of mobile stations is specified by the station-type and
ship-type fields. An addressed (non-broadcast) message 22 overrides a
message 23, but a message 23 ovewrrides a broadcast message 22.
Note that the 'not available' values for longitude and latitudes
match the short ones used in messages 17 and 22, not the long ones
used in the common navigation block and elsewhere.
The txrx field tells the affected stations which channel or
channels they may transmit on. The options refer to the same A and B
VHF channels as in Message Type 22. The field is interpreted as follows:
.Transmit-Mode Table
[width="25%",frame="topbot"]
|===================================
|0 = |TxA/TxB, RxA/RxB (default)
|1 = |TxA, RxA/RxB
|2 = |TxB, RxA/RxB
|3 = |Reserved for Future Use
|===================================
.Station Type Table
[width="50%",frame="topbot"]
|======================================================
|0 |All types of mobiles (default)
|1 |Reserved for future use
|2 |All types of Class B mobile stations
|3 |SAR airborne mobile station
|4 |Aid to Navigation station
|5 |Class B shipborne mobile station (IEC62287 only)
|6-9 |Regional use and inland waterways
|10-15 |Reserved for future use
|======================================================
Reporting Interval is a 4 bit unsigned integer, how often to report
while within the area specified by this message. When the dual-channel
operation is suspended by Tx/Rx mode command 1 or 2, the reporting
interval is twice the interval given in the table.
.Interval Table
[width="50%",frame="topbot"]
|======================================================
|0 |As given by the autonomous mode
|1 |10 Minutes
|2 |6 Minutes
|3 |3 Minutes
|4 |1 Minute
|5 |30 Seconds
|6 |15 Seconds
|7 |10 Seconds
|8 |5 Seconds
|9 |Next Shorter Reporting Interval
|10 |Next Longer Reporting Interval
|11-15 |Reserved for future use
|======================================================
Quiet Time is a 4 bit unsigned integer specifying how many minutes
affected stations are to remain silent. If a class B station receives
a quiet time command, it will continue to schedule nominal
transmission time periods, but is not to transmit message 18 or 24
during the quiet period.
=== Type 24: Class B CS Static Data Report ===
Equivalent of a Type 5 message for ships using Class B equipment. A
"Type 24" may be in part A or part B format; either is 168 bits.
Parts A and B are expected to be broadcast in adjacent pairs. The
interpretation of some fields in Type B format changes depending on
the range of the Type B MMSI field. 160 bits for part A, 168 bits for
part B.
<<IALA>> does not describe this message type; format information
is thanks to Kurt Schwehr.
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description | Member | Units
|0-5 | 6 | Message Type | type | Unsigned integer: 19
|6-7 | 2 | Repeat Indicator | repeat | As in CNB
|8-37 | 30 | MMSI | mmsi | Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38-39 | 2 | Part Number | partno | Unsigned integer: 0-1
|40-159 |120 | Vessel Name | shipname | (Part A) 20 six-bit chars
|160-167 | 8 | Spare | | (Part A) Not used
|40-47 | 8 | Ship Type | shiptype | (Part B) As in Message Type 5
|48-89 | 42 | Vendor ID | vendorid | (Part B) 7 six-bit chars
|90-131 | 42 | Call Sign | callsign | (Part B) As in Message Type 5
|132-140 | 9 | Dimension to Bow | to_bow | (Part B) Unsigned int: Meters
|141-149 | 9 | Dimension to Stern | to_stern | (Part B) Unsigned int: Meters
|150-155 | 6 | Dimension to Port | to_port | (Part B) Unsigned int: Meters
|156-161 | 6 | Dimension to Starboard| to_starboard | (Part B) Unsigned int: Meters
|132-161 | 30 | Mothership MMSI | mothership_mmsi| (Part B) See below
|162-167 | 6 | Spare | | (Part B) Not used
|===============================================================================
If the Part Number field is 0, the rest of the message is interpreted
as a Part A; if it is 1, the rest of the message is interpreted
as a Part B; values 2 and 3 are not allowed.
The "Vendor ID" field is the name of the AIS equipment vendor.
Interpretation of the 30 bits 132-162 in Part B is variable. If the
MMSI at 8-37 is that of an auxiliary craft, the entry is taken to
refer to a small attached auxiliary vessel and these 30 bits are read
as the MMSI of the mother ship. Otherwise the 30 bits describe vessel
dimensions as in Message Type 5.
According to <<MMSI>>, an MMSI is associated with an auxiliary craft
when it is of the form 98MIDXXXX where the digits 3, 4 and 5 represent
the MID and X is any figure from 0 to 9.
=== Type 25: Binary Message, Single Slot ===
Maximum of 168 bits (a single slots). Fields after the Destination
MMSI are at variable offsets depending on tht flag and the Destination
Indicator; they always occur in the same order but some may be omitted.
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description | Member | Units
|0-5 | 6 | Message Type | type | Unsigned integer: 25
|6-7 | 2 | Repeat Indicator | repeat | As in CNB
|8-37 | 30 | MMSI | mmsi | Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38 | 1 | Destination indicator | addressed | 0=broadcast,1=addressed
|39 | 1 | Binary data flag | structured | See below
|40 |0/30 | Destination MMSI | dest_mmsi | Message destination
|? |0/16 | Application ID | app_id | Unsigned integer
|? |0-128 | Data | data | Binary data
|===============================================================================
If the 'addressed' flag is on, 30 bits of data at offset 40 are
interpreted as a destination MMSI. Otherwise that field span becomes
part of the message payload, with the first 16 bits used as an
Application ID if the 'structured' flag is on.
If the 'structured' flag is on, a 16-bit application identifier is
extracted; this field is to be interpreted as a 10 bit DAC and 6-bit
FID as in message types 6 and 8. Otherwise that field span becomes
part of the message payload.
The data fields is not, in contrast to message type 26, followed by a
radio status block.
Note: Type 25 is extremely rare. As of March 2010 it has not been
observed even in long-duration samples from AISHub.
=== Type 26: Binary Message, Multiple Slot ===
Takes up 60-1064 bits (up to 5 slots).
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|==============================================================================
|Field |Len |Description | Member | Units
|0-5 | 6 | Message Type | type | Unsigned integer: 25
|6-7 | 2 | Repeat Indicator | repeat | As in CNB
|8-37 | 30 | MMSI | mmsi | Unsigned integer: 9 digits
|38 | 1 | Destination indicator| addressed | 0=broadcast,1=addressed
|39 | 1 | Binary data flag | structured | See below
|40 |0/30 | Destination MMSI | dest_mmsi | Message destination
|? |0/16 | Application ID | app_id | Unsigned integer
|? |0-1004| Data | data | Binary data
|? |20 | Radio status | radio | See <<IALA>> for details.
|===============================================================================
The data field may span up to 5 256-bit slots in addition to the tail
end of the base slot. The application_ID field, if present, is to be
interpreted as a 10 bit DAC and 6-bit FID as in message types 6 and 8.
Documentation says the data length of each slot is 224 and adds the
note "Allows for 32 bits of bit-stuffing."
The 20 radio status bits are always present after end-of-data in the
last slot and are in the format specified by <<IALA>>. The radio
status is 20 bits rather than 19 because an extra first bit selects
whether it should be interpretred as a SOTDMA or ITDMA state.
Note: Type 26 is extremely rare. As of March 2010 it has not been
observed even in long-duration samples from AISHub.
== Local extensions ==
Some regional authorities extend the AIS message set.
The St. Lawrence Seaway broadcasts hydrological and lock-scheduling
messages using special encodings of the binary data of message types 6
and 8 (described in <<SEAWAY>>, freely available), and safety
information using types 12 and 14. These message types are listed
under the descriptions of types 6 and 8.
The U.S. Coast Guard has a system called PAWSS (Port and Water Safety
System) which uses extended AIS binary formats. <<SEAWAY>> says it's
intercompatible with the St. Lawrence Seaway system; I have not been
able to find any message documentation on PAWSS with which to verify
this, however.
=== U.S. Coast Guard Extended AIVDM ===
You may occasionally see AIVDM packets with additional comma-separated
fields following the CRC-32 checksum. This is a semi-obsolescent
logging format used by the USCG, which has never documented it well
and plans to replace it with a new one based on NMEA 4.0.
Here's a sample sentence and field breakdown:
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
!AIVDM,1,1,,B,15Cjtd0Oj;Jp7ilG7=UkKBoB0<06,0*63,s1234,d-119,T12.34567123,r003669958,1085889680
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Following the "*63" checksum are additional fields delimited by commas.
These fields provide additional metadata about the reception of each AIS
broadcast.
The field beginning with the lower case "s" is a Relative Signal
Strength Indicator (RSSI) measurement from the receiver. This
measurement has a range of 0-65535. This is one of the parameters used
internally by the AIS receiver to determine the signal strength value as
reported in the field beginning with the lower case "d". This field only
exists when the AIS receiver provides this data.
The field beginning with a lower case "d" is the signal strength
measurement for this broadcast in dBm. This field only exists when the
AIS receiver provides this data.
The field beginning with the upper case "T" is the Time of Arrival
of the received broadcast in seconds from UTC 0. This field only exists
when the AIS receiver provides this data.
Another optional field not shown is one that begins with an upper
case "S" and represents the slot number in which the reception occurred.
The field would appear after the checksum and before the station
identifier field. This field only exists when the AIS receiver provides
this data. Example: S0042
The field beginning with the lower case "r" is a station identifier
field. This field is always provided, regardless of the type of AIS
equipment. (Occasionally a base station identifier will be prefixed with
"b" instead.)
The last field is a time tag based on the standard C programming
language time function. Both date and time to the nearest second can be
derived from this field. This field is always provided, regardless of
the type of AIS equipment.
== AIS Payload Byte Alignment, Padding, and Bit Stuffing ==
Warning: Here there be dragons. Read with care. Once you get through
it, you will at least not encounter anything more confusing in the
rest of this document.
=== Byte Alignment ===
AIS is a bit-sync protocol. While some fields within AIS payloads are
8-bit-byte-aligned with preceding padding, most are not. Furthermore,
while most message variants have bit lengths that are a multiple of 8,
some do not.
<<ITU1371>> includes a single sentence, easy to miss, requiring
over-the-air messages to have trailing padding to a 8-bit boundary.
In most cases message lengths are a multiple of 8 with trailing spare
fields added to ensure this; thus, the requirement will not change the
transmitted bitlength of the message from what's described in the
standard. There are, however, two exceptions to this rule.
One is an apparent error in the format design. The type 15 message
has a variant with 108 data bits and a trailing 2-bit spare field, for
110. This spare should have been 4 bits to guarantee a byte boundary
at 112 bits. Decoders need to be prepared to encounter this length
in case the transmitter has implemented the padding reqirement
properly.
The other is messages containing variable-length text packed into
6-bit nibbles: types 6, 12, and 14. They may have trailing padding
after the last nibble to get to an 8-bit boundary. Decoders should
be prepared to encounter and ignore this.
The variable-length binary message types 8, 17, 25, and 26 are
constrained to have data payloads of a size such that the payload ends
on a byte boundary, but should not require special handling on this
account. The binary data in message types 8 and 17 is also guaranteed
to *begin* on a byte boundary, but this is not true of the addressed
variants of type 25 and 26.
=== Interaction with AIVDM padding ===
AIVDM armoring introduces a second layer of padding, with confusing
consequences. The real payload, already padded to a bit length that
is a multiple of 8 by the AIS radio layer, gets armored as a sequence
of ASCII characters encoding 6-bit nibbles. To capture all of it, the
payload must in effect be padded to the next multiple of 6.
Consider a type 12 message with 5 sixbit characters in it. These will
become bits 72-102 in the over-the-air message. The AIS radio layer will
pad that to 104 bits at transmission to get to an 8-bit boundary. The
receiver, reporting the data in AIVDM armoring, will pad that to 108
bits to get to a 6-bit boundary, encode the result, and issue a pad
character of '4' to indicate that the low 4 bits of the last 6-bit
nibble should be ignored.
Because these requirements are tricky and poorly documented in the
official standards, receivers not uncommonly get them wrong. The most
common way to get them wrong seems to be by computing the pad
character incorrectly.
The most common error observed in the wild on AISHub is reporting a
pad 2 bits too small, making the message look like it is 2 bits longer
than it actually is. This seems for some reason to be most common
on Type 5 messages, which then decode as 426 bits rather than 424.
Accordingly, we recommend that when validating fixed-size messages by
type and bit-length, decoders should accept messages that are up to 5
bits over their theoretically correct length.
For messages with a variable-length trailing payload (6, 8, 12, 14,
17, 25, 26) there is no way to detect that the pad character might
be wrong. If it is, this will manifest as truncation of rhe last
nibble or extra trailing zero data.
=== Bit Stuffing ===
The following probably will not effect decoders. Nevertheless we
document it here because it is just the sort of thing that is (a)
likely to confuse implementors reading the public portions of the
standards, and (b) all too likely to become visible if there are
firmware or software errors in the transmission chain.
There are references to "bit-stuffing" in the <<IALA>> clarifications
describing certain payload fields. <<C2>> reveals the following in
3.2.2.1: "The bitstream is subject to bit stuffing. This means that if
more than 5 consecutive 1s are found in the output bit stream, a zero
is inserted. This applies to all bits except the databits of HDLC
flags." <<IALA>> clarifies as follows: "On the transmitting side,
this means that if five (5) consecutive ones (1s) are found in the
output bit stream, a zero should be inserted after the five (5)
consecutive ones (1s). This applies to all bits between the HDLC flags
[...] On the receiving side, the first zero after five (5) consecutive
ones (1s) should be removed."
It appears that this bit stuffing is meant to be performed by the AIS
radio link layer at transmission time and undone at reception time,
and should not be visible in AIVDM payloads reported by the
receiver.
== AIS feed sites ==
Most sites that advertise "live" AIS feeds actually give you a map
display through a browser. Here are a few from which you can get raw
sentence data over a TCP/IP port for testing. Coverage on these is
not yet very comprehensive; these sites tend to have good coverage in
Europe, the U.S. and a few ports in Asia but to be spotty elsewhere.
See their siting maps for details.
- http://aishub.net[AIS Hub]:
Share alike. You contribute a feed, you get back all feeds.
- http://www.aislive.com/[AIS Live]:
Subscription access to real-time data. No onger has free access even
to delayed data.
- hd-sf.com:9009
Free San Francisco Bay Area AIS feed. For non-commercial use only.
== JSON-AIS encoding ==
Here is an application of the JSON metaformat to present AIS data in a
form more convenient for application use than AIVDM/AIVDO sentences.
This encoding is implemented by GPSD and its client libraries. It is
decribed here because (a) the specification is closely tied to the
field encodings, and (b) the author wishes to offer it as an
interoperability standard for other applications.
One previous effort, <<HAM-JSON-AIS>>, has been made to define a
JSON-based standard for exchange of unpacked, human-readable AIS
data. The latest version at time of writing, from December 2008,covers
only a small subset of the most common AIS messages, and many data
fields in the messages it does dump are omitted. The member names
given in the bit-field tables match the attributes used in HAM-JSON-AIS
when HAM-JSON-AIS includes that field.
The general ground rules for JSON-AIS encoding are as follows:
1. Each sentence is a JSON object.
2. When multiple kinds of JSON objects may occur in a data stream, AIS
objects have the attribute "class":"AIS".
3. Collections of fields aggregating to a timestamp are dumped in ISO8601
format. Messages for which this rule is relevant are type 4 and type 5.
4. There are two variants of the encoding, one scaled and one
unscaled, which differ in the treatment of float and
controlled-vocabulary fields. An AIS-JSON object may have the optional
attribute "scaled":true to signify that the rest of its fields are
scaled; if this attribute has the value 'false' or is omitted, no
scaling has been performed. Message types for which the unscaled and
scaled dumps will differ are 1-5, 9, 11, 17-19, and 21-24.
5. In unscaled mode, float-valued fields are dumped in their unscaled
integer form. In scaled mode, division or other specified scaling is
applied and the value dumped as a float, *except* that certain extreme
or data-unavailable value as may be dumped as fixed strings; see the
table below.
6. In unscaled mode, the values of controlled-vocabulary fields are dumped as
integer indices. In scaled mode, the values are dumped as strings.
.Special fields
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|===========================================================================
|Message | Float fields | Controlled vocabularies
| 1-3 | turn, speed, lon, lat | -
| 4, 11 | lon, lat | epfd
| 5 | draught | shiptype, epfd
| 9 | alt, speed | -
| 17-18 | lon, lat | -
| 19 | lon, lat | shiptype, epfd
| 21 | lon, lat | aid_type, epfd
| 22-23 | ne_lon,ne_lat, sw_lon, sw_lat | -
| 24 | - | shiptype
|===========================================================================
.String special values in scaled mode
[frame="topbot",options="header"]
|===========================================================================
|Message | Fieldname | Special values
| 1-3 | turn |
"nan" = not available, "fastright" = fast right turn (above 127 degrees),
"fastleft" = fast left turn (above 127 degrees).
| 1-3 | speed | "nan" = not available, "fast" = speed >= 102.3 knots
| 9 | alt | "nan" = not available, "high" = alt >= 4094 meters
| 9 | speed | "nan" = not available, "fast" = speed >= 1023.0 knots
|===========================================================================
== References ==
[bibliography]
- [[[AIS]]] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Automatic_Identification_System[Automatic
Identification System]
- [[[SOLAS]]]
http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/enav/ais/AIS_Regs_SOLAS_MTSA_FR.pdf[SOLAS
AIS Regulations]
- [[[US-REQUIREMENTS]]]
http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/enav/AIS/AIS_carriage_reqmts.htm[AIS
Carriage Requirements]
- [[[ITU1371]]]
http://www.itu.int/rec/R-REC-M.1371-2-200603-I/en[ITU-R M.1371:
ITU Recommendation on the Technical Characteristics for a Universal
Shipborne Automatic Identification System (AIS) using Time Division
Multiple Access in the Maritime Mobile Band].
Reference included for completeness; I have not looked at it.
- [[[IALA]]] http://www.ialathree.org/iala/pages/AIS/IALATech1.5.pdf[IALA
Technical Clarifications on Recommendation ITU-R M.1371-1]
- [[[NAVCEN]]] http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/enav/ais/[NAVCEN AIS pages]
- [[[NMEA]]] http://gpsd.berlios.de/standards/NMEA.txt[NMEA sentences]
- [[[IMO236] http://www.imo.org/includes/blastData.asp/doc_id=4503/236.pdf[IMO
Circular 236: Guidance on the Application of AIS Binary Messages (2004)]
- [[[SEAWAY]]] http://www.greatlakes-seaway.com/en/pdf/aisdata.pdf[St. Lawrence
Seaway AIS Data Messaging Formats and Specifications]
- [[[NAV55]]]
http://vislab-ccom.unh.edu/~schwehr/papers/2009-Nav55-CG-AIX-Report-Annex1.pdf[IMO
NAV 55 Report Annex 1: Guidance on the Application of AIS Binary
Messages (2009)]
- [[[Schwehr]]] http://schwehr.org/blog/[Kurt Schwehr's weblog]
- [[[IEC-PAS]]] IEC-PAS 61162-100, "Maritime navigation and
radiocommunication equipment and systems" The six-bit encoding
is described on page 26 of Annex C, Table C-1. Communicated by
Kurt Schwehr; I have not looked at it.
- [[[IEC 62287]]] "Maritime Navigation and Radiocommunication
Equipment and Systems – Class B Shipborne Equipment of the
Automatic Identification System (AIS)" Communicated by Mike Greene;
I have not looked at it.
- [[[ITU-MID]]] http://www.itu.int/cgi-bin/htsh/glad/cga_mids.sh?lng=E[Table
of Maritime Identification Digits]
- [[[RAIM]]] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RAIM[Receiver Autonomous
Integrity Monitoring]
- [[[C2]]] http://www.uais.org/AISspecificationCorrigendum2.pdf[AIS
Specification Corrigendum 2]
- [[[MMSI]]] http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/marcomms/gmdss/mmsi.htm#format[MMSI
Format]
- [[[HAM-JSON-AIS]]] http://wiki.ham.fi/JSON_AIS.en[JSON AIS transmission protocol]
- [[[AISHUB]]] http://www.aishub.net/[AIS Hub, the AIS data sharing center]
== Change history ==
Version 1.0 was the initial release covering messages 1-3, 4, and 5.
Version 1.1 adds message breakdowns for 9 and 18, explanation of the
Repeat Indicator feld, and the explanation of USCG extended AIVDM.
Version 1.2 adds information on the the ITU1371 edition 3 maneuver field,
and the RAIM flag. It also adds an important clarification about
six-bit decoding.
Version 1.3 adds information on message types 6, 7, 12, and 13, and
attempts to demystify bit-stuffing.
Version 1.4 adds explicit decoding tables for ASCII armoring and
six-bit ASCII.
Version 1.5 corrects the interpretation of field 7 in AIVDM
ASCII-armored sentences.
Version 1.6 corrects some minor errors in the interpretation of Type
5 messages.
Version 1.7 adds descriptions for Type 10, 11, 19, 21, and 24
messages, information about ITU-1371-3 flags in message type 18,
and the new section on Improving This Document.
Version 1.8 fixes some broken markup and adds information about JSON-AIS.
Version 1.9 adds more information on JSON and the member names.
Version 1.10 fixes a typo in the formula for undoing 6-bit armoring.
Version 1.11 describes message types 15, 16, and 17.
Version 1.12 describes messages 20 and 22, and adds navigation aid
type codes.
Version 1.13 documents more out-of-band values and treats radio status
blocks more uniformly.
Version 1.14 documents message 23.
Version 1.15 corrects an incorrect member name in message 5. It didn't
match my C code, but had no effect on conformance with the standard. I
corrected it because it confused someone working on a Python decoder.
Version 1.16 incorporated various minor fixes and corrections from
Neal Arundale. One 'standard' fieldname changed, in message type 21:
type -> aid_type.
Version 1.17 clarifies the role of @ as a terminator in 6-bit text.
Version 1.18 notes a possible off-by-two error in the standards'
description of type 14, and noted that type 25 and 26 have not
been observed in the wild. It also adds a more complete description
of AIS data types and some pragmatics about spare and reserved fields.
Version 1.19 adds a description of AIS Hub.
Version 1.20 adds a list of AIS feed sites - just two, so far.
Version 1.21 describes JSON-AIS more completely. It adds descriptions
for AIS messages type 25 and 26, not yet observed in the wild.
Version 1.22 describes the problem with message length checks.
Notes on EPFD value 15 and shiptype values > 99 are added. Added
another AIS feed. Corrections and more details on message 22.
Version 1.23 corrects some typos and numbering errors in the
description of message 19 (field widths where correct, though).
Also, AISlive no longer offers free delayed access.
Version 1.24 breaks the Type 6 and 8 application_id field into
DAC and FID and adds tables for know DAC/FID pairs and their sources.
Unspecified fields are noow omitted in JSON dumps. A new section
"AIS byte alignment, bit stuffing, and padding", reveals some
particularly black magic.
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