ECDIS Passage Planning and Watchkeeping, 2020 Edition

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This 2020 edition of ECDIS Passage Planning and Watchkeeping provides best practice techniques and guidance on the use of ECDIS. It includes clear explanations of the configuration of ECDIS settings and the four stages of route planning using the APEM method set out in IMO Resolution A.893(21) (appraisal, planning, execution and monitoring).

The text is divided into user-friendly sections, with attention drawn to operator guidance and safety-critical information. The book is illustrated throughout with colour diagrams and screenshots.

ECDIS Passage Planning and Watchkeeping presents individual chapters covering the configuration of ECDIS settings and each of the four stages of passage planning. It supports the operator through these critical stages in a clear and logical manner, providing a wealth of practical information and guidance.

This publication will assist operators to gain a thorough knowledge of ECDIS, thereby contributing towards safer ship operation/navigation and a more effective bridge team. It also encourages operators to practise the use of every function and technique available on ECDIS.

The Appendices include a series of ECDIS checklists, the IMO Guidance for Good Practice, areas for which special conditions exist, an illustrated list of independent mariner selectors, S-63 error codes and explanations, and objects associated with the question mark symbol.



ECDIS Passage Planning and Watchkeeping


ECDIS Requirements

ECDIS Standards

The Components of ECDIS

Effective Planning on ECDIS

The Four Stages of Planning

Configuration of ECDIS Settings

1.1 Configuration of ECDIS Sensors

1.1.1 Antennas, Offsets and Ship Data (technical and CCRP set-up only)

1.1.2 Sensor Settings

1.1.3 ECDIS Alert Management

1.2 Depth, Contours and Safety Settings

1.2.1 Safety Settings Calculations

1.2.2 Safety Contour and Safety Depth

1.2.3 Cross Track Distance (XTD) and Safety Corridor

1.2.4 Detection Area

1.2.5 Navigational Hazards

1.2.6 Isolated Dangers

1.2.7 Areas for which Special Conditions Exist

1.3 Chart Display Parameters

1.3.1 System Units

1.3.2 ENC Loading Options

1.3.3 Display Category

1.3.4 Further Display Settings

1.3.5 Symbols

1.3.6 Standardisation of Symbols, Terms and Abbreviations (S-Mode)

1.3.7 Palette

1.3.8 Chart Legend

1.3.9 Environmental Data

1.4 Vessel Display Parameters

1.5 Route Display Parameters

1.5.1 Route Alarms

1.5.2 Other Display Options

Appraisal/Information Gathering


2.1 Appraisal Research

2.1.1 Destination

2.1.2 Environment (including weather)

2.1.3 Datums

2.1.4 ENC Management and Installation

2.1.5 ENC Updates

2.1.6 Chart Subscription Expiry

2.1.7 ENC Usage Bands

2.1.8 CATZOC Review

2.1.9 Pick Reports

2.1.10 Other Considerations

Planning the Voyage


3.1 Display Configuration

3.2 Route Creation

3.2.1 New Route

3.2.2 Adding Waypoints

3.2.3 Adjusting Waypoints

3.2.4 Route Table

3.2.5 Route Management and the Voyage Plan

3.3 Mariner-added Objects

3.4 Supplementary Information

3.5 Manual Updates

3.6 Route Check

3.6.1 Configuration

3.6.2 Conducting the Route Check

3.6.3 Visual Check

3.7 Bridge Team Briefing and Master’s Approval



5.1 ECDIS Handover

5.2 Position Monitoring

5.2.1 Cross-checking Frequency

5.3 Waypoint Passing Criteria

5.4 Managing the ETA 110

5.5 ARPA and AIS Overlay

5.5.1 Radar Information

5.5.2 Chart Radar

5.5.3 AIS Integration into ECDIS

5.5.4 AIS Aids to Navigation

5.6 Anchor Watch Monitoring

5.6.1 Effective Planning

5.7 ECDIS Additional Functionality

5.7.1 SAR Patterns SAR Route Planning

5.7.2 Man Overboard (MOB)

5.8 Logbook and ECDIS Voyage Recording

5.9 Sensor Failure

5.9.1 Gyro and Log Failure

5.9.2 GNSS Failure

5.10 ECDIS Failure

5.10.1 Software and Hardware Failure

5.10.2 Cyber Security

5.10.3 Security Drill – ECDIS Cyber Security

5.11 Monitoring Considerations



Annex A – ECDIS Checklists

ECDIS Operator Familiarisation Checklist

ECDIS Appraisal and Planning Checklist

Pre-sailing Checklist

Safety Settings

Handover of the Nav Watch (ECDIS related items)

ECDIS Failure

GNSS Failure Checklist

Anchorage Checklist

Annex B – IMO: ‘ECDIS – Guidance for Good Practice’

Annex C – Detection of Areas for which Special Conditions Exist

Annex D – Additional Areas

Annex E – Display Options

Annex F – S-63 Error Codes and Explanations

Annex G – Objects Associated with the Question Mark Symbol




This 2020 edition of ECDIS Passage Planning and Watchkeeping provides best practice techniques and guidance in the use of ECDIS.

A correctly configured ECDIS is a powerful means of navigation. To obtain the complete benefits of ECDIS and be confident in its use, a good ECDIS operator will:

  • Be proficient in setting up the ECDIS, particularly the safety settings and the display optimisation

  • be aware that ECDIS is always going to provide a ‘position’, understanding how that position has been derived and able to confirm its accuracy

  • take the responsibility to gain an in-depth knowledge of ECDIS.

Learning how to use ECDIS thoroughly, and mentoring others to do the same, contributes towards a safer ship operation and a more effective bridge team. Practising the use of every function and technique available on the ECDIS is one of the most effective ways an officer can improve their core competencies at sea. It is one of the few areas where a junior officer can develop knowledge and experience that can be shared with fellow bridge team members.


Title: ECDIS Passage Planning and Watchkeeping, 2020 Edition
Number of Pages: 214
Product Code: WS1688K
Product Code: WS1688EA (eBook)

ISBN: ISBN 13: 978-1-85609-920-2
ISBN: 978-1-85609-921-9 (eBook)

Published Date: July 2020
Binding Format: Hardback
Book Height: 305 mm
Book Width: 217 mm
Book Spine: 20 mm
Weight: 1.40 kg