Revolutionary Change in NOAA Nautical Chart Production Means
More Products, Faster, for Maritime Use
NOAA’s development of a new navigational chart processing system, designed to meet the changing needs of the maritime community, moves into initial limited production on September 21. The new system, which slims down the current map production process while it beefs up performance, represents a technological leap forward in creating the navigational charts used to speed ships and products safety through the nation’s maritime transportation system.
“NOAA regularly updates over 1,000 nautical charts, adding data and making corrections that are critical to a wide use of applications,” explains Capt. John Lowell, director of the Office of Coast Survey. “To produce more navigation products, faster, we have developed a single source production system that produces all NOAA chart products from one central database instead of the two production lines used since charting technologies first started changing in the mid-1990s.”
With greater efficiencies and versatility, the system speeds chart updates to users; presents opportunities for private industry development of customized products; and improves data exchange capabilities for multiple maritime uses. For instance, the system will integrate with other information for ocean planning and other coastal uses.