Welcome to em-trak support: S100
Our products are designed to be easy to install and easy to use. If however, you have a product question please look through our range of relevant support articles. If you are unable to find the answer please complete the form at the bottom of this page and one of our customer representatives will contact you within one (1) working day.
Use this search box to filter through the FAQ's on this page
[ + ] What is the S100 AIS Antenna Splitter?
Because VHF radios and AIS devices operate within the same frequency range and therefore require the same type of VHF antenna it is possible to share a single VHF antenna on both devices by using an AIS antenna splitter like the S100
The S100 AIS antenna splitter is designed to work primarily with AIS class B transceivers, although it will operate equally well with AIS receivers.
[ + ] Can I use an S100 with an AIS receiver?
The S100 is designed to work primarily with AIS class B transceivers, although it will operate equally well with AIS receivers like the R100
[ + ] Can I use an S100 with a Class A AIS?
No, Class A transceivers are required (by regulation) to be connected to their own VHF antenna
[ + ] How do I send a unit in for repair?
If you do wish to return your unit for warranty repair, then please contact your retailer / supplier who will be able to assist.
[ + ] Can I use a Splitter with a Class B AIS?
Yes. AIS splitters are designed specifically to be used with Class B AIS devices.
[ + ] Why can’t I see other vessels?
If you are happy that your S100 is correctly connected to your Class B and is installed and working correctly, but you are not receiving any targets, this may not necessarily indicate a fault. There could simply be a lack of active/visible AIS targets within range, or there may be an issue caused by your choice or location of antenna. Check the LED indicators on the S100 to see if they are illuminated (Power LED should be on, TX VHF should light when VHF communications are active and the TX AIS should illuminate at least once every 3 minutes if connected to a correctly configured Class B device)
[ + ] What happens if the 12V supply to the S100 splitter fails?
In normal operation, the S100 splitter requires a 12V power supply in order to be able to switch the antenna between being used for AIS and VHF voice communications, however we’re often asked what happens if the 12V supply to the splitter fails. Does the splitter still work? Is this likely to cause damage to either the connected AIS or VHF radio?
The answer to this is that if the power supply to the splitter fails, then it “defaults” to maintaining VHF voice communications. If this happens, the antenna will not be able to supply received AIS information to the connected Class BAIS Transceiver, nor will it be able to be used to transmit AIS messages from the connected Class B AIS Transceiver.
[ + ] Where should I install my S100?
Please note the following guidelines when selecting a location for your S100:
• The S100 must be fitted in a location where it is at least 0.5m from a compass or any magnetic device.
• There should be adequate space around the S100 for routing of cables.
• The ambient temperature around the S100 should be maintained between -25°C and +55°C.
• The S100 should not be located in a flammable or hazardous atmosphere such as in an engine room or near to fuel tanks.
• The S100 is not waterproof and must not be submerged or exposed to spray.
• It is acceptable to mount the S100 either vertically or horizontally.
• It is recommended that the S100 is installed in a ‘below decks’ environment.
• The S100 should be mounted in a location where the indicators are readily visible as these provide important information on the status of the S100.
Full Link: https://em-trak.com/support/install-s100/
[ + ] Is the S100 waterproof?
No, The S100 is not waterproof
Full Link: https://em-trak.com/support/s100-waterproof/
[ + ] Do I need to program the S100?
No. The S100 does not need setting up, nor will it ever required to be connected to a PC
[ + ] How do I know the S100 is working properly?
The LEDs on the front of the S100 will indicate if the unit is powered and also whenever a message is transmitted from the connected Class B or VHF radio.
[ + ] Does the S100 splitter affect the range performance of the connected AIS / VHF?
No, the advanced technology used in the S100 should result in no discernable loss in performance.
[ + ] What antenna should I use with the S100?
One of the most essential parts of an effective AIS system is a well-suited, well installed and fully functional VHF antenna, so it’s no surprise that we’re often asked for advice about how to ensure that this part of the system is setup properly. To try and simplify things, we’d advise that when selecting an appropriate antenna or considering using an existing antenna, you consider the following points:
1 – If an antenna works well with a VHF/DSC voice radio, this is no guarantee that it will also work well with an AIS transceiver. This is because Class B AIS only operates at 2W output, whereas a VHF DSC voice radio operates at 25W output and so will still radiate a signal of some type. AIS Class B devices like the B100 do not have the power to “push through” and may not work on such an antenna (even if a VHF Voice radio can use the same antenna)
2 – Use of narrow band AIS ‘tuned’ antennas are not recommended as they are optimised at the standard AIS1 and AIS2 frequencies and may not give optimum performance when regional channel settings are used.
3 – AIS optimised ‘broadband’ antennas are suitable for use; these antennas typically have a wider bandwidth to give improved performance at the top end of the VHF band where AIS usually operates.
4 – Siting of an antenna is crucial as even a well suited antenna may not radiate a good signal if installed in a poor location. Put simply, keep the antenna upright, clear of anything that could touch it (rigging/other antennas etc), keep a reasonable distance from any other devices/antenna arrays like Radar/HF/VHF radio that may be operating at high power and also keep clear of any other metallic obstructions.
If you’re still unsure of which antenna is right for you, please refer to the recommend specs below for some advice:
Typical VHF antenna specification:
Band: Marine VHF band (nominally 156MHz to 162MHz)
Impedance: 50 Ohms
VSWR: <1.5:1 at resonant frequency
Max power: Typically >25W
Bandwidth: Typically 6MHz
Cable: RG58 or better. Note the IMO recommend RG214 or better for SOLAS installations
Connector: PL-259 (sometimes called ‘UHF’)
Question not answered?
If your question has not been answered please contact us.