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What is VMS?

What is VMS?
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VMS (Vessel Monitoring System) data tracks vessels in a similar way to AIS but this data has historically been restricted to government regulators or other fisheries authorities. Several countries have decided to release their VMS publically on Global Fishing Watch. VMS systems transmit positions at set intervals (we have worked with systems transmitting positions from every ten minutes to just once every four hours) and some systems allow operators to increase transmission frequency when needed. Some vessels broadcast both AIS and VMS and because both systems include the same basic information (time, latitude, longitude, course, speed), they can be easily combined to give a higher resolution vessel track.

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