Thursday, 9 February 2012

Steaming to the next site

We set off at lunchtime today towards the next rMCZ on our survey plan which is East of Haig Fras. We’re making good progress with the tide behind us so it will be around 8 hours steam to get there. 

The officers on the Bridge are using a range of technical equipment to ensure that we get there safely. Radar is used to see the location and direction of movement of other ships in the area, and it is also possible to find out the destination and activity of the other ships by viewing the Automatic Information System (AIS) data that the ships are broadcasting. 

The Endeavour’s position is displayed on electronic nautical charts which show detailed information that the skipper takes into account when setting the course of the ship. Just off South Pembrokeshire we entered a busy area with lots of shipping traffic so the skipper had to change course in order to comply with a traffic separation zone. On the picture below you can see a pink traffic exclusion zone which separates two lanes of shipping traffic that are going in opposite directions.

The Master and Second Officer on the Bridge (Radar screen on the right)
Second Officer Stephen at the controls
Navigation system showing traffic separation zone