Online - VHF Course

Short Range Certificate 

This option allows maximum flexibility giving you the opportunity to choose when and where you study for your marine band, Short Range (VHF Radio) Certificate. Using an RYA Interactive distance learning platform, you will be able to study and practice at a time that is convenient to you, and at your own pace.

With progress tests throughout and a pre exam knowledge check you will be confident that you have sufficient in-depth knowledge to undertake the final assessment. At the end of your training course you will be able to download a course completion certificate to bring with you to the exam.

Booking the exam is easy, just contact us when you are nearing completion and we will book you in for the next available equipment familiarisation and practice session followed by the examination. An additional licence fee of £60 will be payable at the start of your examination

This option allows maximum flexibility giving you the opportunity to choose when and where you study for your marine band, Short Range (VHF Radio) Certificate. Using an RYA Interactive distance learning platform, you will be able to study and practice at a time that is convenient to you, and at your own pace.

What is VHF Digital Selective Calling DSC?

VHF Digital Selective Calling (DSC) provides a means of automating all day-to-day marine terrestrial calling - making the marine radio as easy to use as a telephone. DSC effectively provides the operator with a digital dialling system capable of ringing an alarm at a distant radio station when a call is addressed to that station.

Under GMDSS, all vessels are allocated a unique Maritime Mobile Service Identity (MMSI), which is a unique nine digit code. The digital calling information is transmitted on specially designated channels. In the case of a VHF radio, this is Channel 70. Channel 70 is dedicated for DSC use and must under no circumstances be used for anything else. An added benefit of DSC is that the digital dialling signal can also carry other information, such as your vessel’s identity, position and the nature of the call as well as information specifying the channel upon which subsequent communication should take place. The entire message is transmitted in one quick burst, thus reducing the demand time on the calling channel.

In a distress situation, all necessary information can be sent automatically at the touch of a single button. The vessel’s position can be determined from a GPS navigation receiver connected to the radio or entered manually. Its identity is permanently coded into the radio in the form of the allocated vessels MMSI number. The nature of distress can also be selected by the operator if there is time to do so. Using digital coding, DSC automates all the radio functions with which existing marine operators are familiar.. Operators must be licensed to use the equipment onboard the vessel so, should hold the the VHF Licence, Short Range Certificate or equivalent.

What is GMDSS?

The Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS) is an international system that uses terrestrial and satellite technology and ship-board radio systems to ensure rapid, automated alerting of shore-based communication and rescue authorities, in addition to ships in the immediate vicinity, in the event of a marine distress.

Under the GMDSS, all cargo ships of 300 gross registered tonnes and upwards and all passenger ships engaged on international voyages must be equipped with radio equipment that conforms to international standards as set out in the system. The basic concept is that search and rescue authorities ashore, as well as shipping in the immediate vicinity of the ship in distress, will be rapidly alerted through satellite and terrestrial communication techniques so that they can assist in a co-ordinated search and rescue operation with the minimum of delay.

Yachts and Motorboats fitted with GMDSS equipment are safer at sea - and more likely to receive assistance in the event of a distress - because the GMDSS provides for automatic distress alerting and locating when you do not have time to send out a full distress call. The GMDSS also requires ships to receive broadcasts of maritime safety information which could prevent a distress from happening, and requires ships to carry satellite emergency position indicating beacons (EPIRBs), which float free from a sinking ship and alert rescue authorities with the ship's identity and location.

The online SRC course and taster have the following minimum technical requirements:

Internet connection (broadband or 3G). Charges may apply for 3G 
1024 x 768 screen resolution - this must be available screen space (menu bars, docks or task bars may conceal part of the course window on smaller screens)
Microphone and speakers/headphones

Platform specific minimum requirements:

Mac 
Intel processor OS X 10.7 (Lion) or above. S

PC 
Windows Vista Service Pack 2 
1 GHz (x86) processor 512 MB RAM 
Sound card. 
Quicktime (for viewing videos) available here.

Netbooks are not supported due to the reduced screen resolution.

iPad/iPad Mini 
iOS 6 or above. Older generation iPads may have performance issues.

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Day Online - VHF Course
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