On 6–7 February 2008, the members of the HSR took part in the all-Russian scientific-technical seminar with the theme ‘The Modern Condition of Electronic Cartography for Sea and River Navigation’. It was held in Saint Petersburg and it was organised by the Admiral Makarov State Maritime Academy (AMSMA).
The main objectives of the seminar were the exchange of experience of using electronic cartographical systems (ECS), creation of electronic charts for internal waterways and sea areas, the co-ordination of work to introduce ECS on sea-going vessels, vessels navigating in internal waterways and vessels navigating in both rivers and seas, and the quality standards of specialist training.
More than 100 experts from shipping and cruise companies; manufacturers of electronic navigation charts, ship equipment and technical training equipment; training centres; and sea and river educational institutions took part in the seminar. In total, they represented 62 organisations from Saint Petersburg, Kaliningrad, Arkhangelsk, Moscow, Murmansk, Novosibirsk, Tomsk, Vladivostok and other cities and regions of Russia.
The issues examined at the seminar included:
•the application of ECS for prevention of emergencies
•estimating the efficiency of ECS use on vessels in the sea and in rivers; coverage of navigable ways by electronic charts; meeting the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) requirement on the presence of navigation charts on a vessel; keeping a ship’s collection of electronic and paper navigation charts up-to-date
•quality management of the creation of electronic navigation charts
•correction of electronic charts on board a vessel; delivery of new editions of electronic charts
•use of ECS on internal waterways
•ECS for forecasting weather and ice conditions
•preparation and training navigators for work on ECS and ECDIS equipment
•qualifying requirements for the captain and log assistant
•the prospect of developing ECS in the complex of equipment of the integrated navigating systems and the integrated navigating bridge
•the concept of the e-navigation
•ECS application at offices of companies and sea administrations to increase fleet management efficiency
•integrated navigating systems and the human factor
•noting the inclusion of ECDIS in the list of obligatory conventional equipment for the sea vessels (Regulation 19, Chapter V of the SOLAS).
In total, 26 reports were heard and discussed. The participants showed great interest in the seminar, indicating that there are problems regarding the current creation and use of electronic charts for the seas and rivers that require co-ordinated decisions.