LONG RANGE IDENTIFICATION AND TRACKING
PURPOSE OF LRIT
The Long Range Identification and Tracking (LRIT) system is a designated International Maritime
Organization (IMO) system designed to collect and disseminate vessel position information received
from IMO member States ships. The main purpose of the LRIT ship position reports is to enable a
Contracting Government to obtain ship identity and location information in sufficient time to evaluate
the security risk posed by a ship off its coast and to respond, if necessary, to reduce any risks. LRIT has
also become an essential component of SAR operations and marine environment protection.
It is a satellite-based, real-time reporting mechanism providing almost worldwide coverage (Inmarsat
Coverage) that allows unique visibility to position reports of vessels that would otherwise be invisible
and potentially a threat.
Ships in international voyages
- Passenger ships
- Cargo ships over 300 t
- Mobile platforms
Ships fitted with AIS and sailing in sea A1 areas do not need to transmit LRIT data.
Identity (Ship’s LRIT Identifier)
Date and time (UTC)
Default value 6 hourly
Update interval remotely selectable
Minimum interval 15 min
May be switched off by the Master under certain conditions
THE LRIT SYSTEM CONSISTS OF:
1. The ship borne LRIT information transmitting equipment
2. Communications Service Providers (CSPs)
3. Application Service Providers (ASPs)
4. LRIT Data Centres (DC), including any related Vessel Monitoring System(s) (VMSs)
5. The LRIT Data Distribution Plan (DDP)
6. The International LRIT Data Exchange (IDE), and,
7. LRIT Co-Ordinator
THE SHIP BORNE LRIT: The LRIT system is independent of the means of transmission. It suffices so long
as the position report is transferred to the ASP via CSP. However, due to its polling feature, Sat-C, often
used for GMDSS, is used for LRIT data transmission. This option may be used when there is duplication
of equipment under GMDSS. Only one equipment may be used as a LRIT to avoid duplication of report
(of the same ship) at the DC.
COMMUNICATION SERVICE PROVIDER (CSP): The Communication Service Provider (CSP) provides the
communications services which transfer LRIT data securely from ship to the ASP on shore.
APPLICATION SERVICE PROVIDER (ASP): The Application Service Provider (ASP) receives the LRIT reports
transmitted by the ship via the CSP, adds certain additional information to each report, and forwards
the reports to the Data Centre nominated by the ship’s Flag State. The information to be added to each
LRIT report by the ASP includes:
3. Message Type
4. Message Id
5. IMO number for the ship
6. MMSI number for the ship
7. Two Time stamps (Report received and transmitted) - used for tracking and audit purposes.
Additionally, ASP is also responsible for identifying the ships which fail in sending their automatic
position reports and reset the system if required.
LRTI DATA CENTER (DC): The function of the Data Center is to collect the position report data and
participate in proper dissemination of this information to authorized entities. Each contracting
government must nominate a DC to which all the ships flying their flag must send their position report.
The Data Centers may be –
National (NDC) – owned and operated by the contracting govt (CG).
Regional Data Centre (RDC) – providing services to a number of CGs through a regional entity of
Co-Operative Data Center (CDC) – Governments may form one DC for their ships e.g., EU CDC.
Additionally, there is International Data Exchange (IDC) for the ships of CGs not part of any of
the above DCs to send their position reports.
INTERNATIONAL DATA EXCHANGE (IDE): The LRIT Data Centers are the users of the International Data
Exchange (IDE). In order to be connected to the IDE, a Data Center must be included in the LRIT Data
Distribution Plan. The IDE only routes the communication via Internet, but does access or use the ship
position reports. Only the message headers may be accessed for handling exchange.
By international agreement among the contracting governments, the governments are entitled to
receive LRIT data within 1000 miles of their coast, provided that this does not infringe the territory of
DATA DISTRIBUTION PLAN (DDP): Each contracting Govt specify and submit their policy on data
exchange at the DDP. The DDP is consulted by any DC in order to determine whether a request for LRIT
information should be allowed under the rules for the distribution of LRIT data.
The DDP information includes:
1. A list of the unique identification codes assigned to key elements in the LRIT system;
2. A list of the ports and port facilities within the territory and places under the jurisdiction of each
Contracting Government; and
3. The coordinates which define the various geographical areas declared by Contracting
Governments within which they wish to exercise their rights to receive or restrict the
distribution of LRIT information as a Flag or Coastal State
BENEFITS OF LRIT:
As a Flag Administration, layout of higher security risk geographic areas, worldwide, and
associated ship notification
As a Port State, more effective management of Port State control activity, including security risk
Locating overdue ships
As a Coastal State, to monitor coastal traffic for safety, security and environmental protection
Reducing risk of piracy attacks
As a Flag Administration, locating ships for Flag and Class compliance surveys – safety, security, environme
There are number of steps in the process for any ship to be certified for LRIT participation, including:
Equipment type approval
Equipment conformance testing
Copy of Conformance Test Report on board, Record of Equipment (SEQ, Form-E) amended
LRIT V/s AIS – COMPARISION: