Network for Maritime Domain Awareness (MDA)

Maritime surveillance is a requirement for a number of national and international communities, in terms of law enforcement, search and rescue, environmental protection and resource management. Research activities are pursued to develop reliable and cost-effective systems, built on existing sensors and processing techniques or on completely new solutions. In
such a context, low-power HFSW radars, typically exploited for ocean remote sensing applications and, in particular, surface currents, wind and wave measurements, may be an additional low-cost source of data for maritime surveillance. Their OTH coverage capability, together with a continuous time mode of operation makes them also suited for the purpose of ship detection and tracking.
While an individual radar, operating alone is able to provide a great deal of useful information, the integration of multiple radars into a network results in a system capability which is far more than the sum of its parts. For example, an estimate of a ship’s velocity vector can be obtained in seconds, not tens of minutes or hours as is the case with single radar. As another example, ocean currents can be estimated unambiguously, even in the presence of eddies and upwelling.

AIS ground-truth data

Ships exceeding a certain gross tonnage and belonging to given categories are required to repeatedly broadcast their position and other navigation information, as stated by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in the Safety of Life At Sea (SOLAS) convention. These reports contain both dynamic (e.g. latitude, longitude, course-over-ground (COG), speed-overground (SOG), time) and static (e.g. type, dimensions) information. The success of the network optimization relies on making the best possible use of site-specific environmental information, not only oceanographic and meteorological but also the levels and patterns of sensors.

Maritime Domain Awareness (MDA)
Maritime Domain Awareness is the effective understanding of anything associated with the global maritime environment that could impact the security, safety, economy, or environment.

Maritime Detection & Identification Zone (MDIZ)
MDIZ constructed based on capabilities of existing and projected sensors, and the operational commanders’ need to develop and execute a response for each target class.