Satnews Daily
February 13th, 2014

McMurdo Group—Solutions For Maritime Survival (SATCOM)

[SatNews] McMurdo Group has announced a suite of Automatic Identification System (AIS) survival solutions for enhanced collision avoidance and man overboard (MOB) response in the US recreational boating market.

The solutions, which include AIS beacons, transponders, receivers and software, comprise the most comprehensive AIS offering in the industry and will be demonstrated at the 2014 Miami International Boat Show (booth 1669 in the Electronics Room at the Miami Beach Convention Center) February 13-17.

AIS is an automatic tracking system used on boats and ships that identifies and tracks nearby AIS-equipped vessels and devices to help avoid collisions.  AIS transponders send and receive critical navigation information – such as vessel identification numbers, vessel type, position, course and speed – and graphically display a map of the surrounding vessels and area.  AIS receivers are often used in conjunction with AIS-capable computer software for similar tracking and monitoring purposes.

“McMurdo Group's goal is to provide end-to-end search and rescue and AIS solutions that improve operations and streamline emergency response,” said Irwin Rodrigues, President, McMurdo Group.   “In addition to EPIRBs (Emergency Positioning Indicating Radio Beacons) and PLBs (personal locator beacons), AIS is fast becoming a relied upon means of ensuring safety at sea.  With our broad suite of affordable AIS and MOB solutions, recreational vessel operators now have a variety of commercial-grade AIS options – helping them avoid collisions while potentially saving more lives in man overboard situations.”

In the event a person with an AIS MOB beacon falls overboard, an AIS signal from the beacon is activated.  This signal is then sent to AIS receiving devices where the location of the individual in the water can be pinpointed using GPS positioning and presented on graphical chart maps.  The Smartfind M5 has an on-screen beacon location indicator and audible alarm that is triggered to accelerate rescue efforts.  It also has a “buddy list” feature that can identify the specific individual needing MOB assistance.  For larger fleets, the McMurdo Group AIS Alarm Notification System extends graphical mapping, alarm notification and messaging capabilities to shoreside fleet management operators.

The McMurdo Group AIS product suite includes the following:

AIS Search and Rescue Transponders(SART) or Beacons

  • Smartfind S5 – a compact, lightweight, waterproof (to 10 meters) AIS SART with high-visibility buoyant carry-off bag ideal for use on life rafts or survival crafts
  • Smartfind S10 – a personal, waterproof (to 60 meters) AIS Man Overboard (MOB) device with built-in flashing light and used by individuals or as an additional device to complement a yacht’s on-board flare pack.
  • Smartfind S20 – a compact AIS MOB device with integrated light perfect for use in a lifejacket

AIS Transponders and Receivers

  • Smartfind M5 AIS Class A Transponder – the industry’s first AIS Class A transponder with color display and AIS MOB and AIS SART alarm with crew list functionality to aid in MOB recovery
  • Smartfind M10 AIS Class B Transponder – typically used for smaller vessels, charter boat operators or where the additional features of an AIS Class A transponder are not required (includes an a 30 day data logger)
  • Smartfind M15 AIS Receiver – economical AIS receiver for all recreational  vessels

AIS Software

  • PC Viewer – Graphical software package ideal for individual vessel operators (included with the Smartfind M5, M10 and Smartfind M15 products)
  • AIS Alarm Notification System  – Vessel Monitoring System with integrated AIS MOB Alerts and Messaging typically used for ship-to-shore communications

For more information about McMurdo Group and its comprehensive suite of AIS solutions, please visit