Objectives Partners Project Database GIS Drift Model Tracking Manual Photo Docu
Situation Tracking    
During the development of the VPS software and its adaptation to the demands of the Central Command for Maritime Emergencies, several operative components were incorporated into the system. As examples, progress tracking and the drift model are described on this site.

Progress tracking in the VPS-System is based on the continuous recordings in the progress protocol and action logbook. In the logbook, all activities and communications during routine observations or during a pollution incident are stored.

The objects recorded in the progress protocol (ships, aircraft, strike teams, etc.) are given the current coordinates via the GIS.
Thus, a geo-referenced progress protocol is established which offers, using the tools of the VPS-System, among other things the following data analyses:
  • Display of the current progress as a table and in GIS
  • Display of progress at any time in the past
  • Stepwise illustration in the GIS of progress changes during any period of time
  • Preparation of staff reports for any point of time
  • Output of optimized progress reports as printed, or mailable documents for different purposes
  • Real-time information for connected users about the current progress
  • Saving of logbooks and situation reports in legal certainty, because a subsequent editing of the entered data is impossible
The following image shows the user surface of a logbook. 
Screenshot of database user interface
In damage accounts, units and resources (devices, vehicles, materials) are managed and thus assigned to the actually existing mission sections, staging areas or other rooms and locations. The structure and content of the damage accounts are a model of reality in the area of operation, tailored to the needs of a command and control center.
This structure is also reflected on the user interfaces in VPS. system and allows a wide range of views and reporting options based on the information stored in the loss accounts.  
Screenshot of database user interface

Every change to the damage accounts is automatically saved by the program in the situation log and thus remains traceable. This storage in the situation log opens up a wide range of evaluation options, e. g. for the activity log of a unit or device during an entire event - naturally only in the quality of data maintenance in the damage accounts.

Furthermore, the situation log can be filled manually with entries in order to record the position of certain means of operation or objects (vessel involved in the accident, large equipment, dike sections, etc.) or states (weather situation, traffic situation, etc.).
The evaluation of the situation report is generated by the programme and displays the `current situation` at the current point of time or at any desired point of time in the past as table or in the GIS: 
Screenshot of GIS user interface
Progress tracking in the VPS-System can do more than just replace the traditional progress protocol and magnetic board with ship positions: through a number of additional applications, the system provides transparency and understanding of the local situation.
Into the GIS-window all situation objects appear at their the displayed point of time in the corresponding position. In the window `Current situation:GIS-version` adjacent to it, futher information from the situation report is displayed. Both windows are linked and allow the identification of situation objects on the map or the localisation of situation objects from the list with the GIS.
The following image shows a map excerpt of the GIS in original size: 
Screenshot of GIS map
The button bar below the map enables the identification of situation objects on the map by a click.
The button ´Move´ starts a drag&drop-menu for situation objects, whereby they can be moved to a new position. A new situation report entry will be automatically generated.
With the button ´Delete´, objects can be deleted from the situation by a click, e.g. if they cease their operative work.

In addition to the display of the objects which are part of the current guided position, all other vessels with name, direction of travel, navigation status and possibly dangerous goods load on board can also be shown on the map.

This data is based on AIS data retrieved every 2 minutes from a central server and displayed in VPS. GIS: 
Screenshot of GIS map with AIS data
The movement data of ships determined on the basis of AIS data can also be automatically entered into the position report in defined observation areas, e. g. around a ship accident, so that the shipping traffic in the accident area can be archived in the position report without any manual effort.