NavSim PPU (Portable Pilot Unit) features a pilot optimized version of NavSim’s popular navigation software, Argus. The NavSim PPU comes with a Panasonic ToughBook™ ruggedized laptop along with the NavSim RG4 ROTG (Rate of Turn Generator), and a high quality dual-beacon or GLONASS equipped GPS. NavSim PPU systems are provided with a light-weight water-repellent carrying case for optimum portability when boarding vessels.
NavSim PPU offers a powerful decision support tool to assist pilots in the safe and effective pilotage of vessels. It is the most powerful and effective PPU system available to pilots.
The PPU unit contents:
- A Panasonic ToughBook™ loaded with the latest NavSim PPU Argus software
- NavSim RG4 ROTG (Rate of Turn Generator) with interpreted AIS receiver
- A high quality dual-beacon/GLONASS equipped GPS (SX Blue II DGPS/SX Blue IIB DGPS/SX Blue III GNSS)
- Waterproof carrying case
- All Bluetooth ready
About the NavSim ROTG
The NavSim ROTG unit is a combined ROTG and AIS Pilot Plug. Bluetooth signal to the PPU Computer will contain both ROT information and AIS Pilot Plug information.
Resolution: 0.1 degree per min
Range: +/- 60 degrees per min
Weight: 469 grams
Dimensions: 136x86x49 millimetres
Battery Life: 12+ hrs
Data Output: Bluetooth and USB
Auxiliary Output: Pilot Plug AIS
Certifications: DNV shipboard RFI electronics standards, DNV certification of ROT accuracy
Design / Operation Points and Features: NSROT-RG4-1000
- The unit can charge and operate at the same time from a USB power source (computer or 115 / 230 VAC wall adapter powered USB port).
- Minimum safe compass distance: 2 feet / 610 millimeters.
- Minimum safe distance for VHF radio operation: 3 feet / 915 millimeters for 5 watt handheld unit
- Normal operation is via the wireless Bluetooth™ connection and the USB (wired) port is used as a backup or for a second pilot.
- AIS data from the ships pilot plug can be re-transmitted through the unit for convenience.
- The unit can maintain a synthetic heading from the gyro data for several minutes in case of ships gyro or heading indicator system failure.
NavSim Argus Feature Overview
This is not meant to be an exhaustive list of NavSim PPU software features but highlights some of the key features used and requested by Pilots.
During the hours of darkness it is desirable to hide the “Title Bar” at the top of the screen and the “Task Bar” at the bottom of the screen. This reduces the light being emitted by the screen and increases the area in which the program window will utilize. The use of S-57 charts, as opposed to the use of Raster Charts, will assist in reducing light being emitted by the screen as well.
Another handy feature popular with Pilots on confined inland waterways is Meeting Place. A Meeting Place (or Meeting Point) shows the point where you would intersect the route of a selected vessel. It can be activated by hotkey. Simply dragging the meeting point will tell you the new speed needed to reach that meeting point.
The Alarm Management section allows users to enable or disable all the alarm states of the program. Typically, many pilots disable all but the device alarms. You can show or hide parts of this manager by selecting the alarm types: Main Alarms, Object Alarms, and Utility Alarms.
This is where you modify AIS settings to set the AIS filter range to put less importance on targets outside that range. As well, you may choose to show or hide military or passenger or restricted vessels.
NavSim PPU software alerts the pilot to problem conditions by display of an Alarm dialog that the pilot must dismiss. Alarms can be dismissed individually or en masse with the Dismiss All button. The visual notification can also be accompanied by optional audio alarms. Each alarm has its own custom color and sound options.
- Device failure: No communication with the device
- No Position Fix: Connected but no position data
- Parallel Index Line: Alarms when crossed
- Collision: Collision predicted with AIS
- Zones: Alarm on enter or exit
- Waypoint: Arrival and Departure
- Range configurable in Alarms/Ranges settings
- Active Route: Cross Track Error
- Also configurable; changes road width in highway view
- Alarms can be disabled in Alarms/Ranges settings
Docking allows the user to create a dock by simply drawing it as a line right on the chart. Usually this will correspond to an actual dock, but can also be used for any straight obstacle that needs to be avoided. Docking is in its own layout tab (shown above). Both on the chart in in the Docking layout tab you can monitor distance lines indicating how much clearance each corner of your ship has. In the Docking layout, you will see arrows representing the motion of your vessel, the bearing of the Dock relative to true north, and another display of distances to the nearest docks.
The distance lines can be toggled on and off by clicking the circles on the corner of each ship. Your setup will be saved with your profile. The bow and stern vectors indicate the motion of that point of the vessel. They are always shown in the Docking cell.
Other settings include:
- Display Bow/Stern Vectors On Chart: Shows the bow/stern arrows on the chart view.
- COG Look Ahead Enabled: Shows/hides the COG arrow on the chart view.
- HDG Look Ahead Enabled: Shows/hides the Heading arrow on the chart view.
- Vessel Predictor Enabled: Shows/hides the rate of turn ship outlines.
- Bow/Stern Vector Color: Changes the color of the bow/stern arrows on the chart view.
- Predictor intervals: Changes the time intervals of the predictors.
- Number of Predicted Headings: Sets the number of rate of turn ship outlines to display on the chart view.
PPU Minimum System Requirements
The PPU has been designed for and tested with the following:
- Windows® 7
- Intel® Core™ i5-520M Processor
- 320GB hard drive
- 4GB RAM
- Bluetooth® v2.1 (Class 1 – long range)
- SDHC Memory Card Slot
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- ~ Bill Doyle, St. John’s, Newfoundland
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