Review: AMEC WideLink SOTDMA AIS Transponder

I have had a lot of AIS transponders on Grace and Jammy over the years, most recently the Vesper XB-8000. But after months of repeated issues with the Vesper, I decided to look at whether there was any new technology or up-and-coming company that might dethrone Vesper from the top.

Vesper did correct the issue I was having, but I still was interested in something new. I always start my research with Milltech Marine where I have bought my AIS equipment from since 2007! I found an old post about my first SR-162 receiver from way back then during a recent site cleanup. It has been 10 years of AIS for me, which seems like a long time…

I noticed that there was a new type of Class B AIS transponder using SOTDMA, which stands for Self-Organizing Time Division Multiple Access – the same method Class A uses. You can read a more technical overview on Wikipedia but essentially this technology allows for more frequent and intelligent AIS broadcasts of boat data to others using AIS receivers.

Continue reading the full post on the Sailbits blog.

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