During Navelink’s latest Developer forum, on 23rd of March 2023, Peter Bergljung from SAAB held a presentation about VDES, which is covered in this article. Other topics up for discussion were the ongoing work in working groups regarding digitalization and standardization of the maritime domain, development of MMS and VDES, a SECOM hotel and general questions concerning maritime services, which you can read more about here. 


Peter Bergljung’s Presentation: VDES Alliance and SAAB’s Collaborative Efforts to Advance VDES 

Several actors are looking into the VHF Data Exchange System, VDES. With the currently mandatory AIS, a ship’s position is broadcasted in the form of a one-way communication signal. With VDES, two-way communication is enabled, namely ship-ship, ship-shore, shore-ship, ship-sat, sat-ship communication​.  

Peter Bergljung from SAAB held a presentation about VDES at the Developer forum and informed about the work of the VDES Alliance. VDES is built by a community. There is always a risk for lack of interoperability between vendors which may result from different dialects and interpretations of specifications. In his presentation, Bergljung explained that the VDES Alliance aims to minimise this risk.​ For those who are interested in VDES Alliance Membership or who want to learn more about the VDES Alliance, more information can be found on the website of VDES Alliance. 

Regarding integration between Navelink and VDES, Peter Bergljung says that Navelink needs to adapt to be able to “speak” VDES, as it requires certificates, identity registry and service registry adaptations. It is also important for VDES to adapt to Navelink, since VDES needs some of the aspects that Navelink provides at a higher level​. 

Bergljung also shared that SAAB together with other companies are developing satellites to increase global VDES coverage.​ According to their timeline, they plan to put new satellite in orbit in December this year through the launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket​. 

The presentation ended with a couple of questions to the audience: How do we proceed the work with VDES? Is the way forward for VDES to be a joint EU project? 


Navelink’s next Developer Forum will take place on the 27th of April 2023 at 14:00 CET.  


Author: Milena Dalinaros