ECDIS charts

We recommend using only official vector charts issued by a national hydrographic office for your electronic chart display and information system (ECDIS). It's up to you to make sure the electronic charts you use are official and up to date.

Electronic navigational chart (ENC) coverage of Australian waters is now 100 per cent complete. If you are operating ECDIS, it must be in ENC mode. ECDIS operating in raster chart display system (RCDS) mode should not be used when navigating in Australian waters. We do not permit the use of raster navigational charts (RNC) on board when ENC is available.

Photocopied or scanned copies of official paper charts, whether subsequently corrected to latest notices to mariner or not, are not regarded as satisfying the SOLAS chart carriage requirement. Read our marine notice for the supporting legislative instruction.

Although many electronic charts created by commercial companies (also known as private charts), appear to be vector charts, most are not recognised as official charts and should not be used for navigation.

Official vector charts (also known as ENC) are produced by or with the authority of a national hydrographic office. The ENC chart database has standardised content, structure and format for use within ECDIS. Official ENCs are compiled in accordance with International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) standards, such as S-57 (chart data transfer standard) and S-52 (product display specification). All ENCs are regularly updated with official updates.

We recommend the use of only official vector charts issued officially by or on the authority of a national hydrographic office. It is the responsibility of ship operators to ensure that electronic charts used onboard are official and up to date. Any observed inaccuracies in private charts should be brought to the attention of the supplier.

Last updated: 

Thursday 30 July 2020