ADRIAN HICKS LOOKS AT THE INCREASED EFFICIENCY, SAFETY AND PRIVACY WHEN MAKING THE MOVE TO DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY FOR CREW COMMUNICATIONS AND RADIOS
With the summer season winding down and Monaco Yacht Show behind us, Adrian Hicks, director of Channel 28, discusses why digital crew communications should be top of next year’s upgrade list.
The trusty analogue radio has served us well, but today’s digital communications can make onboard life easier. Crew can now access text messaging, priority and private calling while enabling data transfer with the transmission of alarms and service calls, as well as other essential information, delivered to a single handset.
Yacht radio licences allow for communication on a limited number of channels. Typically, one call would occupy one 25kHz channel. Digital technology allows a single 12.5KHz channel to carry two calls and further expansion allows a yacht to have four or six possible call slots. This means that deckhands, engineers and stewardesses can talk independently but with the ability to easily listen and call across disciplines. If the captain needs to interrupt calls to make a priority announcement this is also easily achieved.
In addition, a GPS location solution can be used for tender and jet ski tracking. Handsets are attached to the user’s life vest enabling the guest to communicate back to the yacht for support. This location service can also be applied as a guest shoreside marina or beach collection service which means crew can efficiently taxi guests back to the yacht.