Automatic Identification System (AIS) Man Overboard Device

AIS Man Overboard Device
AIS Man Overboard Device

An AIS Man Overboard (MOB) device is designed to be carried by individual crewmembers and used in the event of a Man Overboard situation or other personal emergency. Whether you’re a commercial vessel, a fishing trawler, diving or leisure craft, an AIS MOB device should be considered essential safety equipment for every person on board.

When activated the device transmits an AIS MOB message containing your position and ID via AIS (Automatic Identification System). The transmission will also be detected by the all AIS equipped vessels within range. This information can be displayed on a chart plotter or ECDIS display if interfaced with an AIS receiver/transceiver.

As the AIS MOB device includes an inbuilt GPS receiver, your current location is also transmitted, dramatically reducing the time taken to locate and rescue you even in poor visibility. Our AIS MOB devices feature a flashing light to help rescuers pinpoint your precise location in the water.

The McMurdo Smartfind S10 is designed to be activated in the event of a man overboard situation or other personal crew emergency. The unit is activated and deactivated with a simple twist of the orange cap. The SmartFind S10 features a high precision GPS and it will transmit position information and a serialized identity number back to your vessel’s onboard plotter, enabling you to be quickly located and recovered. It will transmit continuously for a minimum of 24 hours and has a 5 year battery storage life. The flashing LED indicator light also makes you easier to spot at night.

The SmartFind S10 is also designed to assist with the quick recovery of leisure divers that find themselves in emergency situations while exploring the depths of the sea. The features of being waterproof, buoyant and submersible to 60 meters makes this AIS MOB device an ideal piece of safety equipment for ocean enthusiasts to own.

McMurdo’s SmartFind S10 is the AIS MOB device used in the famous rescue of Andrew Taylor when he fell overboard during the Clipper Round the World yacht race in 2014. Read about his amazing rescue in the case study below where he talks about how “My dry suit kept me alive, but my AIS MOB device saved my life.”


McMurdo SmartFind S10
McMurdo SmartFind S10
  • Manually activated personal safety device.
  • Easy to operate.
  • Transmits GPS tracking information over AIS.
  • Compact and lightweight.
  • Waterproof, buoyant and submersible to 60 metres.
  • Unique ID.
  • Flashing LED light.
  • Minimum 24hr continuous operation.
  • 5 year battery storage life.
  • Self test facility with battery use indicator.

Smart Find S10 AIS MOB Device

The SmartFind S10 AIS MOB Device is an innovative manually activated personal safety device which incorporates both AIS (Automatic Identification System) and GPS technology. It is designed to aid the speedy recovery of personnel/crew members who find themselves in difficulty at sea.

SmartFind S10

The SmartFind S10 is waterproof, buoyant and compact, intended for carriage by divers, crew and anyone who works on or carries out activities on the water.

The SmartFind S10 transmits target survivor information, including structured alert messages, GPS position information and a serialised identity number. An inbuilt high precision GPS receiver provides accurate position information which is frequently updated to assist in quick recovery of persons in difficulty.

S10 AIS MOB Device target information can be viewed using standard ships AIS equipment such as Class A and Class B transponders and a wide selection of receive only AIS units. AIS equipped vessels and land based VTS stations within the local vicinity will also have visibility of the AIS MOB devices signal.

Whether displayed on the AIS itself or on a companion plotter or ECDIS screen, the unique alert message will clearly indicate the SmartFind S10’s exact location, distance and bearing. SmartFind S10 is buoyant, waterproof to 60 meters, will transmit continuously for a minimum of 24 hours and has a 5 year battery storage life. It also features a flashing indicator light, giving a localised visual fix and assisting in attracting attention after nightfall.

Manually activated personal safety device to aid recovery of persons in difficulty
• Transmits GPS target tracking information over AIS.
• TX ID and position report transmitted every minute.
• Small and light for unobtrusive carriage
• Waterproof, buoyant and fully submersible to 60 meters.
• Flashing LED light.
• Minimum 24 hour continuous operation.
• 5 year battery storage life.

Can be used in conjunction with the McMurdo SmartFind M5 AIS Class A
Can be used in conjunction with the McMurdo SmartFind M5 AIS Class A

How SmartFind S10 AIS MOB Devices works

• SmartFind S10 AIS MOB device is activated to attract attention.
• Alert is transmitted to all AIS enabled equipment within a 4 mile Radius (typical).
• AIS equipment* displays the alert icon (as displayed).
• Precise target survivor information including GPS position becomes viewable when the chart plotter/ECDIS** cursor is positioned over the alert icon.
• This information provides exact location, distance and bearing to person(s) in need of assistance.

As personal AIS MOB devices are still very new, not all small-craft chart plotters with AIS show the correct SART icon as recommended by the IMO. At the very least, they will show the same icon as used for other craft — normally an arrow. In addition, user settings generally allow you to configure the display to show the TX ID number, which in the S10 always begins with 972. This way you can differentiate the S10 from other vessels.

Simple to activate

SmartFind S10 AIS MOB device is simple to operate, even in a gloved hand. When the person in trouble has been successfully retrieved from the water, the beacon can be switched off. A built in test facility indicates whether or not battery replacement is advised.

SmartFind S10 AIS MOB Device Specifications

Exterior finishHi impact ABS/PC Translucent opal
Sealing depthImmersion to 60m (196 ft)
Operating temperature-20°C to +55°C (-4°F to +131°F)
Storage temperature-30°C to +70°C (-22°F to +158°F)
Type6V Lithium metal
ReplacementBy service centre
UseLogged by microcontroller
ActivationManual two stage
Self test (short)Battery use indication
GPS Self test (long)TEST transmission with GPS position
Air cargoIATA UN 3091, not restricted
AIS TransmitterAIS channel 1- 161.975 MHz, AIS channel
Frequency2 – 162.025 MHz 2W nominal
PowerIntegrated PCB
Transmit antennaMessage 1 (TX ID, GPS position,
AIS messages transmittedSOG,COG,UTC); Message 14 (MOB-ACTIVE or MOB TEST)
TX ID numberFactory programmed
GPS receiver
GPS type50 channel
Antenna typeCeramic patch
GPS position updateEvery minute
Length199mm (7.8”)
Diameter at widest point51mm (2.0”)
Weight186g (6.5oz)
Hands freeBelt or arm pouch with head band strap included
SecurityWrist lanyard included lanyard fixing point
First transmissionAfter 18 seconds (no GPS)
Range4 nautical miles (typical)
Secondary location deviceFlashing white LED and status indicator
SmartFind S10 AIS MOB device retail pack98-051-001A
SmartFind S10 AIS MOB Device Specifications
SmartFind S10 AIS MOB Device Specifications

Related articles : Automatic Identification System (AIS)

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.