Difference between RCDS AND ECDIS

The Maritime Safety Committee, at its seventieth session (7 to 11 December 1998), adopted amendments to the performance standards for Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems (ECDIS) to include the use of Raster Chart Display Systems (RCDS).

These amendments permit ECDIS equipment to operate in two modes:

  1. The ECDIS mode when ENC data is used;  and
  2. The RCDS mode when ENC data is not available.

However, the RCDS mode does not have the full functionality of ECDIS, and can only be used together with an appropriate portfolio of up-to-date paper charts.

The mariners’ attention is therefore drawn to the following limitations of the RCDS mode: