The Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS) recently launched two marine information dissemination products recently, to enhance the livelihood of fishermen and increase their security from extreme weather conditions.
These products are as follows:
- PFZ forecasts
Gagan Enabled Mariner’s Instrument for Navigation and Information(GEMINI)
Objective - Seamless and effective dissemination of emergency information and communication on disaster warnings, Potential Fishing Zones (PFZ) and Ocean States Forecasts (OSF) to fishermen
- INCOIS together with AAI developed a low-cost GAGAN system-enabled GEMINI device and electronically designed and manufactured by a private industry M/S Acord, Bangalore under Make in India Program.
- It is a portable device which receives data from the GAGAN satellites and sends it to the user’s cellphone.
- The GEMINI app on the cellphone decodes the signals from the GEMINI device and alerts the user on imminent threats like cyclones, high waves, strong winds along with PFZ and search and rescue mission.
- Due to earlier limitations of the limited range of mobile networks and VHFs, the erstwhile information system was not able to communicate disaster warnings to the fishermen if they moved away from the coast beyond 10-12 km.
- GEMINI has developed on this limitation by utilising GAGAN satellite systems of the AAI to transmit PFZ and disaster warnings to the fishermen.
- Data coverage: It covers the entire Indian Ocean full-time, which will help in information transmission to the fishermen far away from coastal areas.
Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS)
- It is an autonomous body under the Union Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES).
- It regularly provides information, advisories, ocean data, weather forecasts, potential fishing zones (PFZ) data to beneficiaries like fishermen, Indian Navy, marine industries, shipping etc.
GAGAN (GPS Aided Geo Augmented Navigation)
The Airports Authority of India (AAI) and Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) have collaborated to develop the GAGAN as a regional Satellite Based Augmentation System (SBAS).
To provide a navigation system to assist aircraft in accurate landing over the Indian airspace and in the adjoining area and applicable to safety-to-life civil operations.
Satellites carrying payload of GAGAN system
It covers the area from Africa to Australia and has expansion capability for seamless navigation services across the region.
GAGAN is the first Satellite-Based Augmentation System in the world which has been certified for approach with vertical guidance operating in the equatorial ionospheric region.
It is a step by the Government towards initial Satellite-based Navigation Services in India.
GAGAN is also interoperable with other international SBAS systems.
While GAGAN will redefine navigation over Indian Airspace, IRNSS will provide independent and self-reliant satellite based navigation services over Indian region.
Potential Fishing Zones (PFZ) forecasts
- Newly developed by INCOIS, which will provide advisories on Potential Fishing Zones to fishermen 3 days in advance.
- The PFZ forecasts are generated using numerical models operationalized by INCOIS and helps overcome the operational difficulties in providing the PFZ advisories during overcast skies based on satellite data.