You can track some ships online via http://www.marinetraffic.com/ais/
Australian waters comprise the SEA AREA A3 - covering a massive 52.8 million sq km - although due to the poor systems maintained throughout the smaller nations of the pacific - Australia's response system voluntarily extends to the outer pacific areas, often past the Solomon Islands, for example.
There are three government run HF Australian maritime networks:
- National Coastal Radio network
Operated by the individual states (& NT).
(For voice only equipped vessels: non-SOLAS, non-GMDSS DSC);
- Marine Weather network broadcast via the GMDSS transmitter sites.
Additionally there is a privately run SailMail
service, providing HF email services.
GMDSS DSC Network - Australian Maritime Safety Authority (ASMA)
The Australian Federal Government
provides a Rescue Coordination Centre (RCC) and maintains watch on
DSC emergency frequencies,
Cospas-Sarsat distress beacons.
ASMA also provides Inmarsat SafetyNET weather broadcasts, AUSREP, and emergency phone patch facilities.
There are two TX/RX sites for the ASMA located in Wiluna (Western Australia) and Charleville (Queensland). These are controlled remotely from Canberra at the RCC (callsign: RCC Australia or VIC).
HF Emergency frequencies for all GMDSS DSC equipped (SOLAS) vessels: (MMSI 005030001)(2K80J3E)
|404 - 4366 / 4074||607 - 6519 / 6218||806 - 8734 / 8210|
|1226 - 13152 / 12305||1604 - 17251 / 16396||2212 - 22729 / 22033|
National Coast Radio network - State-based voice net (non-DSC)
For non-SOLAS vessels (small craft <300 tonnes) without DSC the maritime authorities in
the Australian States and the Northern Territory provide safety communications
This network (National Coast Radio Network) consists of HF voice-only stations covering the Australian coastline from stations at:
Cairns, Charleville, Darwin, Gladstone, Hobart, Perth, Port Hedland, and Wiluna.
National Coast Radio network voice frequencies used for distress and calling
Weather and navigation warnings 8176 (0555 UTC)
NSW, South Australia, and Victoria
Use the National Coast Radio network Distress & Calling frequencies & supplementary frequency
South Australia, Victoria and NSW broadcast from Charleville or Wiluna (the two ASMA broadcast sites).
Distress & Calling - Coast radio Perth and Headland use the National Coast Radio network frequencies.
Coast radio Cairns & Gladstone H24 Distress & Calling use the National Coast Radio network frequencies.
Coast radio Darwin H24 Distress & Calling uses the National Coast Radio network frequencies.
Coast radio Hobart H24 Distress & Calling uses the National Coast Radio network frequencies and the following frequency:
|2524 Day Calling Only|
Daily Skeds (initial announcements made on voice emergency frequencies):
|TIMES : 0745, 1345, 1903 HRS
||2524, 4146 & 6227 kHz
|TIMES: 1633||2524, 4535, 4620 KHz|
Local Maritime Safety Information 8176 kHz 1555 EST (0555 UTC) Daily
HF Weather Broadcasts
Regular voice and fax weather broadcasts & nav /weather warnings are
provided by the
Bureau of Meteorology from the Wiluna (VMW) and Charleville
The voice network uses the frequencies (kHz) of:
|Station||Day (VMC 2100z - 0800z)*
Day (VMW 2300z - 1000z)*
|Night (VMC 0800z - 2100z)*
Night (VMW 1000z - 2300z)*
|VMC||4426, 8176, 12365, 16546||2201, 6507, 8176, 12365|
|VMW||4149, 8113, 12362, 16528||2056, 6230, 8113, 12362|
* Does not include time offset for daylight savings.
VMC (Australia Weather East) broadcasts for the following
Coastal Waters between Cape Don in the Northern Territory and Eucla in Western Australia, including all Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia zones.
High Seas for the Northern, North Eastern and South Eastern high seas areas
VMW (Australia Weather West) broadcasts
for the following areas:
Coastal Waters between the South Australia - Victoria border and Torres Strait in Queensland including all South Australia, Western Australia and Northern Territory zones.
High Seas for the Northern, Western and South Eastern high seas areas.
Weather Fax broadcasts (requires
(If using USB receiver tune 1.9 KHz below frequency for software to decode accurately)
|Station||Day (VMC 1900z - 0900z)*
Day (VMW 2100z - 1100z)*
|24 hrs||Night (VMC 0900z -
Night (VMW 1100z - 2100z)*
|VMC||20469||5100, 11030, 13920||2628|
|VMW||18060||7535, 10555, 15615||5755|
* Does not include time offset for daylight savings.
Emission code: 3K00F3C
FSK Carrier: 1900 Hz
Shift: White +400 Hz, Black -400 Hz
Scan line frequency: 2 lines per second (120 lines per minute)
Scan line stability: Within 5 parts in 1,000,000
Index of co-operation: 576
Scanning line density: 3.8 lines per millimetre (96 lines per inch)
Picture format: Comprises start, phasing, picture and stop sequence as detailed below
Start signal: Carrier modulated for 5 seconds by alternate Black and White at a rate of 300 Hz
Phasing signal: 60 scan lines, each scan line comprising White level for 25 milliseconds followed Black level for 475 milliseconds
Picture signal: Line to start with 25 milliseconds White level, followed by one line of picture content uniformly occupying the remaining 475 milliseconds. This format to continue until entire picture content has been transmitted
Stop signal: Carrier modulated for 5 seconds by alternate Black and White at a rate of 450 Hz, followed by 10 seconds of Black level
SSB Receiver tuning frequency: (for a standard WMO facsimile decoder) 1.9 kHz below the published transmit frequencies
Tuning Tone: Most charts are preceded by 60 seconds of 'tuning tone' (white signal) to allow receivers to automatically tune and capture the chart. The 'tuning tone' precedes the scheduled transmission time of a chart.
Some charts could not be preceded by 'tuning tone' as there is insufficient idle period preceding. To automatically capture these charts, set your receiver to wake up 2-3 minutes earlier and tune-in on the tail-end to the previous transmission.
DRM (Broadcast from Melbourne)
Freq: 5960 kHz
Mode: C/10 kHz
SDC/MSC: 4 QAM
Data: 8.64 kb/sec
SUPPLIMENTARY AUSTRALIAN NETWORKS
SailMail is a global group, with established stations worldwide. The Australian node is in NSW and uses Pactor, Pactor II, and Pactor III to provide HF email for registered users.
|Yachting & Pleasure||Professional Fishing||Commercial Vessels|
|2284 Khz||2112 Khz||2008 Khz|
|2524 Khz||2164 Khz||2032 Khz|
|4483 Khz||4535 Khz||2436 Khz|
|4620 Khz||2635 Khz|
Volunteer Coast Guard Stations
Queensland Volunteer rescue stations (listed in order from south to
north) indicating frequencies monitored.
|Point Danger Marine Rescue (NSW)||24/7||2182, 2201,
|VMR Southport||24/7||2182, 2524, 4125, 4483|
|Coast Guard Southport||24/7||2182, 2524, 4125, 6215, 8291|
|VMR Jacobs Well||24/7||2112, 2182, 2201, 2524, 4125, 6215|
|VMR Victoria Point||0700–1700 w/e–p/h||2182|
|Coast Guard Brisbane (Manly)||0600–2200 Saturday
|4125, 6215, 8291|
|Coast Guard Redcliffe||0600–2100 Mon–Fri
0600 (Fri)–2100 (Sun)
|2182, 2524, 4125|
|Coast Guard Mooloolaba||0600–2200 7 days
2200–0600 (night watch, 7 days)
|Coast Guard Tin Can Bay||0600–1800 7 days||2182, 2524, 4125|
|VMR Hervey Bay||0600–1800 7 days||2182, 2524|
|VMR Bundaberg||0700–1800 7 days||2182, 2524, 4125|
|VMR Round Hill||0630–1800 7 days||2182, 2524|
|VMR Gladstone||0630–1800 7 days||2182, 2524, 4125|
|Coast Guard Keppel Sands||0600–1800 Tues–Thurs||2182, 2524, 4125|
|Coast Guard Yeppoon||0600–1700 Fri–Mon||2182, 2524, 4125, 6215, 8291|
|VMR Mackay||0800–1800 7 days||4125, 6215|
|VMR Burdekin||0800–1700 w/e–p/h||2182, 2524, 4125|
|Coast Guard Townsville||0800–1700 Mon–Fri
|Coast Guard Ingham||0800–1700 w/e–p/h||2182, 4125|
|Coast Guard Tully||0800–1700 w/e–p/h||2182, 2524|
|Coast Guard Innisfail||0800–1700 w/e–p/h||2182, 4125|
|Coast Guard Cairns||0900–1800 Mon–Fri
|Coast Guard Port Douglas||0900–1800 Sunday||2524|
Sydney to Hobart 2014
Coordinated via Kordia on 4483kHz and 6516kHz.
VHF CH 16, 72, 73, 80 & 81.