Radar Navigation, Radar Plotting and Use of ARPA – Radar Navigation at Operational Level – IMO Model Course 1.08


The course is essentially practical and consists of a series of exercises performed on radar simulator with two or more own-ships and several others controlled by the instructor and each exercise will be followed by class discussion giving participants the opportunity to analyses the actions taken and discuss possible alternatives.


  • Skills of Stabling mode and range setting for the circumstances.
  • Set the controls for optimal performance
  • Aware of the limitations of the equipment in detecting targets and in terms of accuracy.
  • When within range of the coast
  • Compare the radar display with the chart
  • How to select suitable conspicuous land targets and use these targets to fix his position
  • How to use radar maps, navigation lines and routes to maintain the own ship on the planed and safe route.
  • How to choose an appropriate radar presentation mode
  • How to select plotting and graphics control suitable to the circumstances
  • How to make appropriate use of operational alarms to acquire and track those targets which may present a potential threat of collision
  • The speed and the nearest approach to enable early action to be taken in accordance with the COLREGs to prevent a close-quarters situation arising and make use of radar to confirm and monitor their actions.
  • Understanding the dangers of over-reliance on the automatic acquisition and tracking of targets and on operational alarms
  • To be aware of the performance standards set out in IMO Resolutions on radar performances


  • Meeting the required performance standards will recognize when radar should be in use
  • Make efficient and effective use of radar as a navigational aid in congested, confined waters, recognize potential threats and make valid navigational and collision-avoidance decisions based on sound radar observation and plotting in compliance with the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (COLREG)
  • Successful completion of this course will also provide the ability to respond to, coordinate and execute a search and rescue operation.

Course Details

Duration: 10 Days

Assessment: Yes

Attendance: 100% attendance is required

Entry Requirements:

  • Entry Requirements This course is principally intended for candidates for certification as officers in charge of a navigational watch. Prior to entering the course, trainees should have completed a minimum period of six months at sea and preferably have gained some experience of watch keeping.
  • Trainee officers for certification as officer in charge of a navigational watch should have completed or be following a planned and structured programme of training; shipboard training should include tasks or projects relating to bridge work and watch keeping duties.
  • The course would also be of value to others using radar, e.g. those working in such craft as harbour and customs patrol launches, in which case the entry standards may be adjusted to suit the particular circumstances. However, the intake of trainees for each course should normally have similar backgrounds.
  • In consideration of radar technology development, it is advised that trainee officers be familiarised with personal computer operations, have the knowledge of planning and conducting a passage and determining position and maintaining a safe navigational watch and be proficient of navigational aids as described in Table A-II/1 of STCW Code.

Accreditation: FTA (UAE), MCA (UK) as Automatic Radar Plotting Aids (ARPA) Course