Sunday, February 13, 2011

THE NAIVE SAILOR, RADAR ANTI COLLISION -- CAPT AJIT VADAKAYIL



In the year 1983, my ship was approaching Tokyo bay.

The previous 3 days had typhoonic weather, and there would be a mass exodus of all ships and Japanese coasters, eager to reach the next port, or continue fishing, after getting detained for 3 bad weather days.

On a 12 mile range, in not so good visibility I could see maybe around 300 ships targets. Well we had an ARPA radar, and the OOW had called me up to handle the super dense crazy traffic . In this area, nobody knows ROR.  All react like fishermen, unlike the English Channel..

My third mate continued acquiring targets Ping Ping Ping on the radar, when he should be concentrating on visual mode, with visibility around 2 miles. I told him to change over to RELATIVE trails, as i noticed that he was on true trails mode. I also told him NOT to look further than 6 miles on the radar, cutting down his attention area.

I called up the Radio Officer on bridge and asked him to change the CRT tube of one of the radars with a brand new one, in the spare locker. The old tube had a burnt centre spot and had NIL persistence of vision.

He did it in a jiffy, and since it was sunset, i could see the good persistence of vision, without the black hood and screen. -- like the modern day TV type radars giving relative trails.

I them told the OOW to put off the ARPA and use only radar mode. Totaly shocked, he told me to repeat my command , thinking he had heard wrong. I again said " Put off the ARPA, I dont want you to acquire targets on ARPA".

I took the ship into Yokahama harbour , and then handed over to the pilot. By the time he took over the visibility was around 1 mile.

The nervous Jap pilot was literally running around like a monkey, peering through the binoculars, frothing from the mouth, bumping here and there, running back to the ARPA and acquiring targets  ping , ping,  ping all on TRUE vectors.   It was a sight to see.

Thrice i had to warn the pilot that we were on collision course and make the decision to alter course with pilot on board, whcih is bad protocol , but within maritime law traditions.

Much later, at port, with cargo work in progress, the OOW ( third mate ) was hanging around my cabin, -- he wanted to speak to me.

He said : " Sir, you had hundreds of targets, you were at absolute ease without an ARPA, and made several alterations, which i noticed were all perfect and optimum ones, in such dense traffic, with poor visibility. I am impressed. What was the secret? "

I said " Son, it is hard to explain all this to a boy who prefers to wear a digital watch , still i must try"

Here is the gist--

If you notice any of your friends , wearing a digital watch, make a mental note that he is NOT TOO BRIGHT.

This is the way the human brain works. Smarter blokes wear analogue watches, which does not tax the brain. I do not want to digress. That will be another blog.

We had more than 300 targets on a 12 mile range, all cross traffic, with absolute chaos.

Or say 150 targets forward of beam . Most of the ships had slowed down, and some fishing vessels were stopped..

Now, how many blessed targets could the ARPA acquire?  May be about 20 or max 25? ( on that old radar it was just 15 nos )

What is the big idea in acquiring 15 out of 150 targets, leaving 135 unacquired? How do you know the 15 you had acquired were actually hostile targets?

Even if you had acquired 15 hostile targets by sheer divine luck, can the human brain take in so much digital information.

Hell NO!

Now if you were looking only at the analogue TRUE vectorARPA lines, like what the Jap pilot did, what can you make out of it?  Are you interested in knowing the TRUE course and speed of a target?  For what?

At sea every target is round. It does NOT have a bow and a stern in bad visibility. It is RELATIVE, RELATIVE, RELATIVE on bridge--

Why did i choose to change the radar CRT tube ?

Because the persistence of vision afforded gave me RELATIVE trails of all the 300 targets. Any such trail produced in the opposite direction gave me a ready made RELATIVE ARPA vector.

I could instantly see which all targets were hostile. (The reversed relative trails pointing to the radar centre spot )

I could see several targets making crazy emergency alterations of course , by checking out their curving relative trails. I could make out which all fishing targets were stationary, as they gave a parallel trail, of fixed length, based on own ship's speed.

I could see that the ships that did not leave a trail ahead of me were going in the same direction as my ship. I could see who all had slowed down.

In fog, if any Navigator or Pilot, uses TRUE vectors on ARPA, only god's grace is saving the ship. 

This foolish idiot will think he is in full contraol, while in reality , he is NOT-- he is a most dangerous man to safety of life on baord.

The only way TRUE ARPA vectors will help, is when you are in a TSS, you would like to know who all are following the TSS scheme as, the ROR is different in TSS.  You get to know the true course of the target. Also you can find out which fishing vessel is stopped ( with her nets down/ or sleeping ! )

RELATIVE TRAILS GIVEN BY RADAR PERSISTENCE OF VISION , PRODUCED IN THE OPPOSITE DIRECTION IS SAME AS RELATIVE TRIALS ON ARPA, WITH THE ADVANTAGE THAT YOU DON'T HAVE TO DO PING PING PING, OR BOTHER ABOUT LOST ARPA TARGETS AND ITS ASSOCIATED DISTRACTING ALARMS.

On modern TV type radars , you have an option of pushing a RELATIVE TRIALS button, and finding out a single hostile target among 150 ahead of you, in one single glance.

This system is the world's best lookout man, in heavy traffic.

If you have fed in the timing for the trail length as 3 minutes , all it requires is for a very small boat to come up to the crest of a swell , 3 times in a period of 3 minutes, and it will be pinged.

So you can ask any OOW, will you have 10 lookout men on each bridge wing, or a nice RELATIVE TRAILS radar screen, which option he would prefer? Only an absolute idiot will say 10 lookout men.

After all what will the lookout man tell you? Sir, I can see a light 1 point on port bow--blah--blah-- after a dozen times of this stupid charade, you will go out of your mind, in frustration, for this type misleading information with 150 targets in front, means nothing to you-- right?

At anchorages , use radar in plotter more, zoomed in, with own ships past TRACK on.. The GPS antenna will leave nice doughnut patterns around your ship's anchor. Even a small shift of 20 metres due to stern yawing will be drawn on the screen.


At sea , you must move with the times.

Morons ashore who do not have an iota of your anti-collision experience will write fancy circulars , and try to brainwash you with his idiotic nonsense. You don't have to accept that.

A week back i did my re validation course , for my Certificate of Competency, and an old ex-captain, with 1/25 of my anti-collision experience was lecturing merrily how to avoid collision with various fancy slides.

But then sometimes you let it be--

-- we cant take on this crazy world and win in one single day , right?   I went there to get a certificate , after being a student for 2 weeks , and i got it!

Mission successful!


Note: This post is the most valuable of all my Naive series posts.


CAPT AJIT VADAKAYIL ( 28 YEARS IN COMMAND )
..





3 comments:

  1. CH
    October 13, 2014 at 6:35 AM
    Respected Captain,

    What is special about Tamil Nadu?

    How come it is able to continuously produce word geniuses like Ramanujam, Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, C.V. Raman, A.R. Rahman, Abdul Kalam, Venkatraman Ramakrishnan, Viswanathan Anand, Illayaraja, etc?

    Even till recently the Chief Justice of India, the Finance Minister, the RBI governor are all Tamils?

    Is there any scientific reason behind this? Because no other region has produced such super genius people in such numbers.

    Regards

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    #####################
    Capt. Ajit Vadakayil
    October 13, 2014 at 7:06 AM
    hi ch,

    i am sure if i were a lawyer, i will NEVER EVER become CJI.

    i am sure if i were an economist, i will NEVER EVER become finance minister.

    you want me to continue ?

    when i was on my training ship in mumbai with 250 other cadets ( two years ) -- the biggest TELUs ( oily and slimy ) and SNEAKS ( snitches ) became SCC ( senior cadet captains ) , CC ( cadet captains ) , CL ( cadet leaders ) etc.

    i used to be in the CAPTAINS MONTHLY BREAKFAST PARTY ( cadet with maximum negative marks for OFFICER LIKE QUALITIES ) -- to be chewed up for breakfast every month .

    i got an EXTRA FIRST in every subject --except OFFICER LIKE QUALITIES.

    now what are OFFICER LIKE QUALITIES-

    being a son of a bit#h, being a sneak, being a hypocrite, being a as$ kisser , being a leader who will sell out his team, being a back biter, being an informer , being the best in playing to the gallery.

    so, so--

    at the passing out parade --most of the cadets who got all PRIXES were leaders -- they all got BOOOOOEEEEED !

    I remember i got only one prize--for being the best REPORTER IN ENGLISH -- the claps I got from the entire hall still resound in my ears -- along with another ROC ( royal officer cadet -who did NOT care to become a sold out leader ).

    and mind you -- i was in every single team which made my TOP ( starboard fore top ) the champion TOP.

    i was a champion sailor, rower, signaller, marks in subjects, soccer team in both years --

    but i lacked OLQ ( officer like qualities ) of being a FU#KIN' SLIME BALL.

    so in my passing our certificate , after two years of training -- i had an EXTRA FIRST in all subjects -- except OLQ where i was third grade

    so i guess they held a special meeting and GRACED ME TO FIRST CLASS --a young 18 year old boy -- .TEE HEEE !

    AT SEA, THE SAILORS DO NOT CARE FOR YOUR FOUR STRIPES- THEY ONLY CARE FOR WHO YOU ARE--

    AT SEA PEOPLE WHO KNOW ME , OR HAVE HEARD OF ME -- OR SAILED WITH ME, WILL VOUCH--

    CAPT AJIT VADAKAYIL WAS A SLAVE MORE POWERFUL THAN THE MIGHTY FU#KIN' CAESAR -- BY LIGHT YEARS .

    this has now passed on to LORE -- never ti happen again in the annals of sea .

    am i boasting ?

    -- so be it !

    humility is NOT about having a low opinion of yourselves to please the JEALOUS party.

    see, this would have been part of my post-- GAMES CAPTAIN PLAYED--

    you made me reveal it prematurely --with your TAMIL PRIDE ! TAKE IT EASY !

    check out my training ship-

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwpFBPMtnj4

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k0BxC3kFET8

    capt ajit vadakayil
    ..

    ReplyDelete
  2. Capt. Ajit Vadakayil
    October 15, 2014 at 7:00 PM
    STOP PRESS:

    I AM WRITING THIS AS I PROMISED ONE OF MY READERS 45 MINUTES AGO-- HE RAN UP TO ME DURING MY MORNING WALK--

    HE WANTED TO KNOW OUT OF MY 300 PLUS SCOOPS IN MY NEARLY 845 ODD POSTS--WHICH IS NO 1 AND WHICH IS NUMBER 300.

    ############

    well let me make it clear , these 300 scoops are CONSTRUCTIVE SCOOPS .

    all these 300 scoops are in the plane of INVENTION and NOT innovation.

    none of these 300 scoops are DESTRUCTIVE -- so my posts proving that edison, newton, darwin, einstein etc are IDIOTS does not find a place in these scoops.

    so waht could be the no 1 scoop?

    it is about providing a HINT on how to make a astronaut hibernate while travelling to mars -to cut down on food and water .

    it is about keeping alive a seriously wounded soldier till he can find proper medical care.

    punch into Google search-
    HIBERNATION WITH HYDROGEN SULPHIDE GAS VADAKAYIL

    and

    FUMAROLES FOR FREE ENERGY AND HYDROGEN SULPHIDE SUICIDES IN JAPAN VADAKAYIL


    one of my russian chief engineers who lived near siberia , a place infested with HUGE bears had once woken up a bear while on hibernation in a cave ( as a child ) and he told be how furious the animal was. Before they go into months of hibernation they would kill a large animal ( bury the dead animal it in the ground ) and would NOT eat it unless it became putrid , reeking of rotten eggs..

    WELL WHAT WOULD BE NO 300 RANK.

    it is about PIN WORMS on as$hole.

    Check out the comment dated 18th Dec 2013 , about surcharging the anus with oxygen 5 times a day to prevent pinworms disrupting your REM sleep. This is a 6000 year old Ayurvedic cure for pinworm which happens when you eat non-veg heavy meats and do NOT wash your as$hole after a crap.
    Punch into Google search-
    VEDIC PRACTISES IN MECCA VADAKAYIL

    If I were a white JEW, I would have been an international celebrity. but then who cares?

    I have reached a stage where ONLY I can evaluate myself--

    one of my DUTCH bosses tried to patronise me nearly 2 decades ago -- he said he has given me a good confidential service report-

    so i told him something in Hindi -- with its translation.

    VADAKAYIL KHUD QUESTION PAPER SET KARTA HAI !

    VADAKAYIL KUD EXAM LIKTHA HAI !!

    VADAKAYIL KHUD NUMBER DETA HAI !!!

    capt ajit vadakayil sets his own exam question paper, he writes the exam , and then he gives himself the marks .

    THIS IS THE MEANING OF LIBERATION.

    believe me -- that man hugged me ( NO patronising here ) and said -- he expected such an frank retort from me .

    he said- every other captain would have said thank you .

    he was told to enter into this dialogue by the single man owner of that shipping company . this was about my " CUT THE CRAP " EMAILS -- where i would point out that the EMPEROR IS NAKED .

    99% of the people will NOT even understand the wisdom and gravity of the statement above.

    capt ajit vadakayil
    ..

    ReplyDelete
  3. i think this method is best seamen method in dense traffic.İ learned that method my old aged ex master .but nowadays very few sailor know that method(even many of masters)

    ReplyDelete