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[aprssig] Cruise Ships, APRS.FI, and AIS

Mark Fellhauer sparkfel at qwest.net
Thu Jan 15 06:02:31 UTC 2009

While getting ready for my next cruise on the Carnival Spirit (Feb. 16th to 
Acapulco) I noticed that APRS.FI has added AIS data to San Diego 
Harbor.  This is fantastic!

It appears they are getting their data from marinetraffic.com.

I've also been using this KML file to track cruise ships worldwide from 

At first I thought they were just interpolating a cruise ship's position 
based on it's itinerary, but using San Diego's Pier webcam you can see they 
are getting their updates in real time.

Too bad Carnival bans all Ham Radio transmitting equipment from their ships 
(and I am instituting my own laptop and cellphone ban), but I'm tempted to 
bring a small scanner for signal sniffing.

I'm waiting for someone to come up with a handheld AIS receiver.  The last 
cruise I was on we could see other ships off in the distance, especially at 
night, and I was curious as to see who they were.



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