Raceix uses space tech for shared-positioning system

Irish marine technology firm, Raceix, is piloting a next-generation shared-positioning system for the recreational boating sector.

“At present, recreational boaters are poorly supported by ‘situational awareness’ technologies,” says Aidan Foley, CEO. “The current AIS system is far from ideal for this sector due to its slow updating times and requirement for having specific hardware on board, so we firmly believe that our technology delivers a more usable and understandable solution.

“With no roads on the water, other boats can appear from anywhere at any time, heading in any direction.

“Our solution can remove unexpected surprises while also providing a robust and understandable level of situational awareness. More informed boating results in more enhanced, more enjoyable, and much safer boating which improves the experience for everyone on board.”

Raceix is working in conjunction with the European Space Agency (ESA) Space Solutions Centre Ireland, as an ESA BIC Ireland supported company.

On-water testing will run throughout the summer from its testing base at New Ross on the River Barrow and into the Waterford Estuary, and also at various sites in North America. Following the pilot programme the technology – entitled M-TAP (Marine-Traffic Awareness Platform) will be rolled out internationally later this year.

“ESA BIC is a European-wide internationally acclaimed programme and we’re deeply honoured to have been selected as a participant,” says Foley.

“This will also see us working closely with the MaREI Centre in Ringaskiddy, County Cork – the world-leading Science Foundation Ireland Research Centre for Energy, Climate and Marine. The insights, support and credibility these bodies will provide Raceix with is of enormous value and will help us to successfully navigate our way through our technology and commercialisation development roadmaps.

“As we move forward we expect to add additional citizen science elements to M-TAP to further increase the benefits for those on the water, for marine researchers and for international hydrographic bodies,” says Foley.

“The marine sector has the potential to benefit massively from the utilisation of space technology and resources and we are delighted that Raceix is the first marine-based ESA BIC Ireland client company,” says Peter Finnegan, ESA manager. “The platform that is being developed by Raceix aims to revolutionise the recreational boating sector across the globe by deploying technology to replace outdated methods that are no longer fit for purpose. Raceix has assembled a highly experienced team, possessing a vast amount of relevant industry experience and international business development capability.”

M-TAP is part of a larger Raceix solution called ‘BoatingOS’, which was announced with global development partner, Beneteau, at the Dusseldorf and Miami Boat Shows in 2020.

Main image shows Aidan Foley, CEO of Raceix, and Captain Phil Murphy, senior marine officer, Wexford County Council.

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