High speed cat fits JRC high speed solid state S-band

Written by Nick Blenkey
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JULY 13, 2016 — JRC reports that the world’s first, smallest and IMO compliant solid state S-band radar with 8-ft antenna and high speed rotation has been installed on the high speed car/passenger ferry Lake Express.

The 192-ft  catamaran travels at a service speed of 34-knots between Milwaukee, WI, and Muskegon, MI, on a service that started in 2004.

Lake Express selected JRC for the dual X- and S-band radar installation because of the features, design, and integration of the new Multi Function Display as well as the ability to utilize a high speed S-band radar.

With the world’s first 8-ft antenna, fully meeting the IMO performance standards, the magnetron-free solid state technology also adds the advantage of greatly reduced “in life” service costs.

JRC reports 700 successful solid state S-band radar installations to date, used on a variety of vessels sailing in different parts of globe.”

In researching the options for this project, JRC’s offerings stood out and the finished install has exceeded our expectations,” said Lake Express senior captain John Rogers, commenting on the choice of JRC’s Multi Function Display. “We are very happy with the ease of use and performance of the new equipment and we look forward to the advanced features of this navigation suite serving us for years to come.”

The Lake Express bridge upgrade included the 8-ft high speed solid state chart radar (JMR-9282) interswitched with a 6-ft high speed X-band chart radar (JMR-9210) and a new ECDIS (JAN-9201), all equipped with 26-inch monitors. Also installed as part of the navigation electronics suite upgrade: a GPS navigator (JLR-7800), Class-A universal AIS (JHS-183), GPS compass (JLR-31) and the AlphaLine repeater for use as a heading and Rate-of-Turn indicator. All components were purchased from  Finn Marine, who installed them over the offseason lay-up period.

Milwaukee-based Lake Express is the Midwest’s only high-speed auto/passenger ferry. The modern ferry accommodates 250 passengers, and holds up to 46 vehicles and 12 motorcycles. The aluminum hulled catamaran was built at Austal USA’s Mobile, AL, shipyard and was launched on March 20, 2004.

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