In 1998 the Chief of Naval Operations directed the U.S. Navy to begin a transition from navigating using conventional paper charts, to the use of an electronic charting system (digital charts). In response, the Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems-Navy (ECDIS-N) instruction was issued. This new technology will presumably reduce or prevent future collision and grounding incidents associated with navigational errors. The objective of this study is to determine the best possible ECDIS-N capable system or systems that will meet the future needs of the Navy. Also examined, are the possible annual repair cost savings that an ECDIS-N system could realize for the Navy. Data for two different periods of Navy collisions and groundings were compared and used to estimate the average incidents per ship and the average annual repair cost incurred by the Navy. The cost, capabilities and limitations of alternative ECDIS-N systems are evaluated in a cost-benefit comparison that justifies the Navy's implementation of certain ECDIS-N systems in different classes of ships. It is estimated that an ECDIS-N system integrated with an Automatic Radar Plotting Aid could have prevented 47% of the Navy's collisions and groundings from 1998 to 2000, saving 96.4% of the combined repairs costs
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