2021 NMEA Awards: Remote Monitoring: Maretron N2KView
For an owner interested in monitoring vessel systems while underway or remotely, Maretron’s N2KView software displays the necessary information including engines, generators, tanks, rudders, navigation instruments, local weather and more. Its abilities were enough to convince the judges in the 2021 National Marine Electronics Association Awards program to name the N2KView the winner in the Remote Monitoring Category.
N2KView is user-configurable and a captain can create different screens for his/her exact needs while switching from screen to screen for monitoring on board systems. Digital displays, analog gauges, graphic displays, warning lights and bar graphs can all be set up the way a user wants. Operating limits and color bands for analog gauges can be established so it’s easy to see when things are within limits and when they go too high or too low.
N2KView provides additional functionality including alerts, video, control and fuel management. A user can set up multiple warnings and alarms so he or she can be forewarned of potential problems. Alerts let a captain relax knowing that the system is watching for smoke, carbon monoxide, high bilge water or anything else he/she feels is important. N2KView’s video capability allows for the addition of a camera in the engine room or as part of a security system. The control functionality gives the ability to manage the electrical system. For example, the lights or pumps can be turned on or off directly from N2KView and even tell if the lights or pumps are burned out or not working. Finally, the fuel management function uses information from the fuel-flow monitor, tank monitors and GPS to provide advanced information like distance and time to empty as well as fuel rate and economy.
N2KView software can run on a vessel’s computer or on a standalone product like a Maretron TSM800C, TSM1330C displays or on a Maretron Black Box MBB300C vessel-monitoring computer. Running N2KView on a boat’s main computer requires a Maretron USB100 or an IPG100 that is necessary to get information from the NMEA 2000 network to the computer. There’s also a mobile version of N2KView that runs on a smartphone or iPad.
Alerts are one of the primary features of the N2KView and they can improve situational awareness. Is the bilge filling with water or is there smoke or heat in the engine room? Are the batteries dead? Is there carbon monoxide in the cabin? A user can create N2KView favorite screens with indicators to manually monitor each parameter, but it’s inconvenient to scroll through different screens to make sure all is well. Once an alert is programmed in the N2KView software, the parameter is automatically monitored and the captain is immediately notified if something requires attention. Notifications can be sounders, horns or strobes placed throughout the vessel. Additionally, N2KView can send an email or text message if an issue arises.
Taking things a step further, N2KView can be configured to deliver conditional alerts. For example, if a generator is running under no-load, which isn’t good for the unit, Maretron can define a condition during which a no-load alert will trigger, for example, choosing a condition defined by the generator voltage greater than 100 volts, which indicates that the generator is running. When the load drops below 5 watts and the generator is running, an alert will trigger. A delay can even be programmed so the generator can run for some time without a load before the alert is triggered. Following are some additional conditional alerts.
Maretron’s N2Kview program satisfies most of the International Maritime Organization’s Bridge Navigational Watch Alarm System (BNWAS) requirements. It sounds a series of alarms if the person at the helm falls asleep, becomes otherwise incapacitated or is absent for too long of a time.
For anchoring, the N2KView does more than simply operating the windlass. N2KView comprehensively monitors and guides the user through all phases of planning, setting and retrieving an anchor. Some anchor-watch systems use the GPS position to log the drop point, which can result in errors of up to 15m (49.2’) and false triggers. N2KView includes a comprehensive Anchoring Module.
For PC users, Adobe AIR is bundled with N2KView so there’s no need to install the software. MAC users can install Adobe Air and then download and install N2KView Software for MAC.