NOAA Seeks Comment on Ending ALL 'Traditional' Paper Charts - Page 9 - SailNet Community
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post #81 of 95 Old 11-21-2019
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Re: NOAA Seeks Comment on Ending ALL 'Traditional' Paper Charts

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I don't think we want to go back to the days of oil tankers position fixing with horizontal sextant angles and running fixes.

Ships are using modern navigation techniques. An old school chartfolio for an oil tanker might cost 10's of thousands of dollars and take up an entire room for storage and it would take a second mate working full time to keep them up to date. I don't think its oil tankers or their owners pushing to save old paper chart formats. I suspect its mostly just yachtsmen, and a small percentage of them at that.

Have a freind who is a coastal pilot, big ships. He and all his colleagues have been issued ipads for their charting needs. They aren't carrying around back packs full of paper charts.
We actually agree as far as the requirement for carrying paper charts is concerned. Of course tankers are using some kind of electronic system.

The problem is the data, or rather the curation of the raw data. The skill of the cartographer is to take sensory input like depth lines, land features etc and transform that into a format that is useful for the mariner to be used efficiently in real time. This is what your friends uses on his Ipad.
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post #82 of 95 Old 11-21-2019
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Re: NOAA Seeks Comment on Ending ALL 'Traditional' Paper Charts

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We actually agree as far as the requirement for carrying paper charts is concerned. Of course tankers are using some kind of electronic system.

The problem is the data, or rather the curation of the raw data. The skill of the cartographer is to take sensory input like depth lines, land features etc and transform that into a format that is useful for the mariner to be used efficiently in real time. This is what your friends uses on his Ipad.
About 6 or 7 years ago, I was with an outfit that hired hydrographers to create an up to date chart of a river because they didn't really trust the 50+ year old lead line surveys. Everything was done digitally. A paper chart was never created from the raw data, it went straight to ENC.

The above iPad uses Vector charts.

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post #83 of 95 Old 11-21-2019
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Re: NOAA Seeks Comment on Ending ALL 'Traditional' Paper Charts

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The government isn't really taking raster charts away. Most people stopped using raster charts because better technology came along.

I say file those old raster charts where they belong, right next to the Loran C and the DECCA navigator.

If you want basic paper charts as a back up. Make your own from the ENC files. If for whatever reason you can't or don't want to make your own, there are 3rd party charts that are in many ways more yachting freindly than the big old NOAA charts.
I differ.

Tankers and the like don't use the raster charts because they just stick to the shipping channel. Once they get to where navigation might get complicated, they get a pilot.

Recreational sailors don't keep to the shipping channel, and current presentation of ENC data is... it's just bad. Hazards get lost as you scroll out, there's not enough detail where you need it, and too much where you don't. Creating useful maps is current too complicated for science, that's why we call it an art form. Telling people to make their own is not actually useful.

(To reiterate, this is not about paper vs electronic, this is about raster vs vector.)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MastUndSchotbruch View Post
Looks like a cost-cutting idea by some pinhead. How many cartographers can you pay for one oil tanker on the rocks?
NOAA said the demand for RNC data has plummeted over the past couple of years, while demand for ENC data has skyrocketed. Seems the actual market is driving their decisions. Do you really expect them to intentionally lose money just for a few local US coastal sailors (usually in home waters) who do not have confidence in their ability to use a different, and more robust, data format?

It seems that some here may think that NOAA produces world wide charts, and not just US coastal and inland ones.

I'm no cartographer, but have not used RNC data for over 12 years. They look kind of funny to me now - like seeing a Daguerreotype today.

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Re: NOAA Seeks Comment on Ending ALL 'Traditional' Paper Charts

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Originally Posted by MastUndSchotbruch View Post
The problem is the data, or rather the curation of the raw data. The skill of the cartographer is to take sensory input like depth lines, land features etc and transform that into a format that is useful for the mariner to be used efficiently in real time. This is what your friends uses on his Ipad.
What I'm realizing from these discussions is that many recreational users have an expectation that a chart is a static display, as opposed to an interactive one. With an interactive display one can bypass the need for some of these cartography skills, as you can simply dictate, for example, that all labels will be placed directly to the right of the named feature. On a static display this is a recipe for obscured or unreadable text and features, but on a dynamic display it also means reduced confusion as to which feature the label is associated with.
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Re: NOAA Seeks Comment on Ending ALL 'Traditional' Paper Charts

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I differ.

Tankers and the like don't use the raster charts because they just stick to the shipping channel. Once they get to where navigation might get complicated, they get a pilot.

Recreational sailors don't keep to the shipping channel, and current presentation of ENC data is... it's just bad. Hazards get lost as you scroll out, there's not enough detail where you need it, and too much where you don't. Creating useful maps is current too complicated for science, that's why we call it an art form. Telling people to make their own is not actually useful.

(To reiterate, this is not about paper vs electronic, this is about raster vs vector.)
When I said people could make their own, I was referring to printing their own from available data. I was quite clear on that. It's easy. Lots of people do it. So it is useful. In fact NOAA hasn't sold printed charts in 5 years. Its like trying to save the dodo. One way or the other, if you want a new paper NOAA chart, you have to get it printed, either yourself, or by a third party.

When using ENCs there are a few guidelines I like to follow. Fly the route before hand on an appropriate scale, if you are in boney areas, select an appropriate scale, often recomended practice is to set depth contour and xte alarms.

People can and do use vector charts effectively.
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Last edited by Arcb; 11-21-2019 at 08:01 PM.
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Re: NOAA Seeks Comment on Ending ALL 'Traditional' Paper Charts

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About 6 or 7 years ago, I was with an outfit that hired hydrographers to create an up to date chart of a river because they didn't really trust the 50+ year old lead line surveys. Everything was done digitally. A paper chart was never created from the raw data, it went straight to ENC.

The above iPad uses Vector charts.
That's fine, sometimes vector charts are preferable (I use both in OpenCPN). But sometimes they are NOT, and if there are no raster charts you do not have the option.

It is certainly a lot cheaper to make vector charts. Minimal skill is required, you just define once for all (and all maps) what features are to be included and the computer copies the respective files. Bingo, vector chart! That is far different from actually making a map. As someone said, this is an art, nothing a computer will be able to do for a _really_ long time.
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Re: NOAA Seeks Comment on Ending ALL 'Traditional' Paper Charts

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That's fine, sometimes vector charts are preferable
It seems the IMO would agree with you on this (since tankers were brought up)

SOLAS, Chapter V, Annex 14:


4.) The IMO Circular highlights the fact that ENCs possess more capabilities than RNCs. As a result, ECDIS operating with ENCs is a more powerful navigational tool than ECDIS operating in the RCDS mode. For example, when operating with ENCs, alarms are triggered automatically by the data but when operating with RNCs the same alarms only occur if the mariner first identifies and electronically marks the features concerned during passage planning.
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Re: NOAA Seeks Comment on Ending ALL 'Traditional' Paper Charts

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It seems the IMO would agree with you on this (since tankers were brought up)

SOLAS, Chapter V, Annex 14:


4.) The IMO Circular highlights the fact that ENCs possess more capabilities than RNCs. As a result, ECDIS operating with ENCs is a more powerful navigational tool than ECDIS operating in the RCDS mode. For example, when operating with ENCs, alarms are triggered automatically by the data but when operating with RNCs the same alarms only occur if the mariner first identifies and electronically marks the features concerned during passage planning.
That's what I said, sometimes they are preferable. Alarms is a good example.
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Re: NOAA Seeks Comment on Ending ALL 'Traditional' Paper Charts

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Originally Posted by MastUndSchotbruch View Post
That's what I said, sometimes they are preferable. Alarms is a good example.
I don't think that's really what the annex says. I think they mean if Vector Charts are available try to use vector charts, if vector charts are not available, raster charts are a reasonable alternative

Back to oil tankers, the Exxon Valdez was not operating in a shipping channel. It was avoiding ice bergs that were beleived to be in the channel. As far as I know, no electronic charts were fitted, but had vector charts been fitted, a contour alarm on a vector chart may have alerted the nav officer of the reef well in advance. RNCs don't normally do that sort of thing.

Here is some more from the annex:

"1.)*The Maritime Safety Committee, at its seventieth session (7 to 11 December 1998), adopted amendments to the performance standards for Electronic Chart Display and Information systems (ECDIS) to include the use of Raster Chart Display Systems (RCDS).

2.)*These amendments permit ECDIS equipment to operate in two modes:

2.1)*the ECDIS mode when ENC data is used; and

2.2)*the RCDS mode when ENC data is not available.


However, the RCDS mode does not have the full functionality of ECDIS, and can only be used together with an appropriate portfolio of up-to-date paper charts.

3.)*The mariners’ attention is therefore drawn to the following limitations of the RCDS mode:

3.1)*unlike ECDIS where there are no chart boundaries, RCDS is a chart-based system similar to a portfolio of paper charts;

3.2)*Raster navigational chart (RNC) data, itself, will not trigger automatic alarms (e.g. anti-grounding). However, some alarms can be generated by the RCDS from user-inserted information. These can include:

clearing lines
ship safety contour lines
isolated dangers
danger areas

3.3)*horizontal datums and chart projections may differ between RNCs. Mariners should understand how the chart horizontal datum relates to the datum of the position fixing system. In some instances, this may appear as a shift in position. This difference may be most noticeable at grid intersections and during route monitoring;

3.4)*chart features cannot be simplified or removed to suit a particular navigational circumstance or task at hand. This could affect the superimposition of radar/ARPA;

3.5)*without selecting different scale charts, the look-ahead capability may be somewhat limited. This may lead to some inconvenience when determining range and bearing or the identity of distant objects;

3.6)*orientation of the RDS display to other than chart-up, may affect the readability of chart text and symbols (e.g., course-up, route-up);

3.7)*it may not be possible to interrogate RNC features to gain additional information about charted objects;

3.8)*it is not possible to display a ship’s safety contour or safety depth and highlight it on the display, unless these features are manually entered during route planning;

3.9)*depending on the source of the RNC, different colours may be used to show similar chart information. There may also be differences in colours used during day and night-time;

3.10)*an RNC should be displayed at the scale of the paper chart. Excessive zooming in or zooming out can seriously degrade RCDS capability, for example, by degrading the legibility of the chart image; and

3.11)*mariners should be aware that in confined waters, the accuracy of chart data (i.e., paper charts, ENC or RNC data) may be less than that of the position-fixing system in use. This may be the case when using differential GNSS. ECDIS provides an indication in the ENC which allows a determination of the quality of the data"
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Last edited by Arcb; 11-21-2019 at 06:59 PM.
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