Synapsis NX bridge integrates third-party systems

New type-approved solution simplifies customizing integrated bridge systems for advanced ships

Integrated navigation systems offer users the benefit of a single, harmonized interface between humans and technology. However, ergonomic and operational considerations sometimes lead to the requirement of implementing further functionality on bridge workstations.

Raytheon Anschütz, a business of Raytheon Technologies, designed a type-approved solution that offers customers maximum flexibility when adding functionality to the bridge.

“We are using a digital matrix system as an extension for advanced bridge system solutions,” said Christian Rabe, project manager for integrated bridge systems at Raytheon Anschütz. “The matrix system enables the remote display of virtually any additional software or computer at a dedicated workplace on the bridge.”

The true “any function at any place” principle enables the flexible and ergonomic integration of navigation and third-party bridge systems. Customers also benefit from a type-approved, cost-effective solution, without any compromises in the integrity of the navigation system or ship safety.

The system consists of a digital keyboard video mouse (KVM) matrix center, workstation module and processor module:

  • The processor as the “source” connects to the processor module. The processor module converts all signals and connects via Ethernet to the central matrix center.
  • The components of the workstation side connect to the workstation module linked as the “target” to the matrix as well. The maximum distance between the components is up to 140 meters, offering a variety of options for bridge designers.
  • The matrix center features further intelligence for configuration, offering a total of 64 inputs and outputs to connect several sources and target workstations.

“The complete system is modular and scalable. Adding workstations or processors at a later stage is possible and easy to realize,” Rabe said. “We can even configure customer-specific scenarios that allow the operators to enter a predefined setup of the workstations by one click.”

Regardless of the configuration, the system detects any single point of failure and leads over to a proven, redundant hard-wired backup configuration to ensure safe navigation of the ship.

Earlier this year, a sophisticated bridge system including the digital KVM matrix was delivered to the Vox Ariane, a state-of-the-art and highly automated hopper dredger. Read more here:

Typical applications for the digital KVM matrix have been, so far, specialized workboats and research vessels, mega-yachts or large passenger ships. In addition to the navigation system, the matrix often combines automation, dynamic positioning and CCTV, but also office PCs or other specific sources.

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