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Wednesday, October 23, 2019 

Northrop Grumman Sperry Marine has enhanced its compass retrofit capability with the release of CompassNet 1.2, creating an open platform for heading management which combines multiple heading inputs, including from third party compasses.

The latest version of CompassNet reduces the time and complexity of retrofits and is designed to support Sperry Marine’s vision of integrated digital navigation services, providing a simplified process for capturing data from multiple sources.

CompassNet network technology supports ease of installation and upgrade, since multiple units can be connected via network cables without the need to replace accessories such as heading repeaters.

“Installing a dual gyro compass system under the previous architecture might require close to 400 cables and connections, with CompassNet, the amount of cables for a dual compass system is reduced to around 50,” said Sandra Gassig, Product Line Manager, Compass, Speed Log and Steering, Sperry Marine. “By specifying a refit using CompassNet 1.2, installation time can be reduced to half of what was needed with the previous architecture.”

This is in part because of the smart connections between components. Sperry’s Data Distribution Unit picks up input signals directly from different points on the bridge, meaning is not necessary to connect to each compass separately because information will be made available to all devices on the network through the DDU.

Sperry Marine’s vision for digital navigation is for heading data captured using CompassNet 1.2 to be accessible off the bridge and ultimately shared with shoreside teams using the Sperry Sphere platform.

“We are already collecting data for use by the Sperry Service team to quickly analyse system status and give us intelligence on the performance, which makes it easier to identify problems and faults,” said Gassig. “The use of a system like CompassNet already provides multiple advantages for the navigation team, because as an open platform it means operators only need to provide training for crew on a single system.”

Installing CompassNet represents cost savings as additional or replacement compasses can be installed alongside existing equipment without loss of integrity, the need for recalibration or replacement of the complete system.

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