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Radar Basics: Navigation and Watchkeeping

Navigation and watchkeeping using Radar provides a well-rounded picture of how a navigator can optimally integrate radar during their bridge watch. The training course has been based on the book “Radar Basics” written by Volker Wenzel and Marcus Wöster.


The Radar Basics: Navigation and Watchkeeping course is available for purchase here.

right arrow 16 Course Description

Radar is an elementary mean of positioning. It provides an easy and precise capability to fix a position and determine how the vessel moves in relation to other targets. The accurate setting of the radar is imperative for correct usage and needs to be considered when taking over the watch.

Needless to say, radar is only one step when taking over the watch. Therefore, it needs to be seen in the context of the other bridge equipment and traditional watchkeeping procedures.

right arrow 16 Course Objectives

The aim of the course is to enable navigators to efficiently integrate radar into their bridge watch. It provides guidance at all crucial steps, from taking over the bridge and setting up the radar to watchkeeping, navigation and even SAR use.

right arrow 16 Target Audience

Officers who are looking for an easy-to-follow supplement or refresher to their radar and ARPA courses and anyone requiring knowledge of the general features of radar.

right arrow 16 Course Structure

Module 1: Setting up the Radar

Module 2: Radar Navigation

Module 3: Watchkeeping

Module 4: Search and rescue with Radar and AIS

right arrow 16 Learning Outcomes

Module 1: Familiarizes the learner with the essential settings and tools of radar, from tune and gain to orientation modes and vectors. It provides background information to ensure their advantages and limitations are understood.
Module 2: Builds on classical navigational techniques, such as positioning by range or bearing, in combination with the specific radar tools that can be used to facilitate those techniques.
Module 3: Puts radar in the context of a navigational watch, enhancing the learner’s capability to adjust it to the specific requirements of the situation.
Module 4: Provides an overview of radar and AIS based SAR devices, to ensure their detection during navigation.

right arrow 16 Prerequisites

Required: Basic nautical knowledge.

Note: It is not necessary for you to have a CoC as a navigational watch officer; however, an understanding of terrestrial and electronic navigation is recommended.

right arrow 16 Course Characteristics

Course Access: 90 days
Timeframe: Approx. 1 hour
Language: English
Certificate: Yes (valid indefinite)
Strong Authentication: No
Daily test attempts: 2
Min % of progress on GuideMe to access TestMe: 70%
Min % of passing the TestMe: 70%
Total test time: 60 min

right arrow 16 Technical Requirements

We recommend the use of a wired internet connection when taking this course. Connection via mobile internet is also possible; however, it is considered unstable and might cause the failure of your exam.

Supported Internet Browsers: 

Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox and Microsoft Edge

Operating Systems:

  • Microsoft Windows
  • Apple macOS
  • Linux,
  • Android
  • Apple's iOS
Important note: For optimized experience we suggest using a desktop browser.

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