The Nautical Institute
The world's leading international professional body for qualified mariners
Useful Information >> Acronyms and Abbreviations
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Acronyms and Abbreviations
 A ABS American Bureau of Shipping (classification society)
  Aframax tanker < 80,000 dwt (average freight rate assessment)
  AIS automatic identification system
  AMNI Associate Member of The Nautical Institute
  AMVER US Coast Guard's Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue System
  API American Petroleum Industry
  ARCS Admiralty Raster Chart Service
  ARPA Automatic Radar Plotting Aids
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 B BC Code of Safe Practice for Solid Bulk Cargoes
BDI Baltic Dry Index
  BFI Baltic Freight Index
  Bimco Baltic and International Maritime Council
  Bimcosale The Bimco standard form of bill of sale
  BOSVA  British Offshore Support Vessel Owners Association
  BPI Baltic Panamax Index
  BROA British Rig Owners Association
  BV Bureau Veritas (classification society)
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 C CAD computer assisted design
  CAP Condition Assesment Programme Survey
  CBI computer-based information
  CBT computer-based training
  CCC Carrier container council
  CCP Contolable Pitch Propeller
  CCS China Classification Society
  CD compact disc
  CD Rom compact disc read-only memory
  CEN European Committee for Standardisation
  CENELEC European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardisation
  CES coast earth station
  CESMA Confederation of European Union Shipmasters Associations
  CG coast guard
  CIRM International radio maritime committee
  CIT Chartered Institute of Transport
  CLC International Convention on Civil Liability for Oil Pollution Damage
  Class Category in classification register
  COA contract of affreightment
  Colreg International Convention on Collision Regulations,IMO
  CoSWP  Code of Safe Working Practices For Merchant Seamen
  COW crude oil washing
  CSS Code of Shipmanagement Standards
  CTU cargo transport unit
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 D DERA Defence Evaluation and Research Agency (UK)
  DETR Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions (UK)
  DIS Draft international standard (ISO)
  DLat difference in latitude
  DMDO Distilate Marine Deisel Oil
  DGPS Differential Global Positioning System
  DLong difference in longitude
  DNC Digital Nautical Chart
  DNV Det Norske Veritas (classification society)
  DOC document of compliance (as per ISM Code)
  DP dynamic positioning
  DR dead reckoning
  DSC Dangerous Goods,Solid Cargoes and Containers,IMO
  DSS decision support system
  DSV Diving Support Vessel
  Dwt deadweight tonnes
DX.90 Format for digital cartographic data
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 E ECDIS electronic chart display and information system
  EC European Comunity or European Commission
  ECS electronic chart system
  EEZ exclusive economic zone
  EN European Standard
  ENC electronic navigation chart
  EPFS Electronic Position Fixing System
  EPIRB emergency position indicating radio beacon
  EPS  IMO performance standard for ECDIS
  ETA estimated time of arrival
  ETD estimated time of departure
  ETSF  Electronic Trading Stasndard Format
  ETSI European Telecommunications
  EU European Union
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 F FCC fully cellular containership
  FCO financed,constructed and operated
  FTP file transfer protocol
  FNI Fellow of The Nautical Institute
  FO fuel oil
  FPSO floating production,storage and offloading system
  FSA formal safety assessment
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 G GIS Geographic Information System
  GLA General Lighthouse Authority
  GL Germanischer Lloyd (classification society)
  Glonass Global navigation satellite system
  GMDSS global maritime distress and safety system
  GMT Greenwich mean time
  GOC general operators' certificate with regard to GMDSS
  GPS global positioning system
  GRP Glass Reinforced Plastic
  GT gross tonnage
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 H HBL Hydrostatic Balanced Loading
  HCRF  Hydrographic Chart Raster Format
  HGE Harmonisation Group on ECDIS
  HHP High holding power (anchors)
  HNS Convention on the Carriage of Noxious and Hazardous Substances by Sea
  HO Hydrographic Office, observed height
  HP high pressure
  HSC International Code of Safety for High-Speed Craft,IMO
  HSE health safety and environmental,Health and Safety Executive
HSWA Health and Safety at Work Act
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 I IACS International Association of Classification Societies
  IADC International Association of Ddrilling Contractors
  IAIN International Association of Institutes of Navigation
  IALA International Association of Lighthouse Authorities
  IAPH International Association of Ports and Harbors
  IASST International Association for Sea Survival Training
IBC Code International Code for the Construction and Equipment of Ships carrying Dangerous Chemicals in Bulk, IMO
IBCS Integrated bridge control system
  IBIA International Bunker Industry Association Ltd
  ICAB International Cargo Advisory Bureau
  ICHCA International Cargo Handling Coordination Association
  ICS International Chamber of Shipping: Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers: international code of signals
  IFO Intermediate Fuel Oil
IFTPA International Forest Product Transport Association
  IFSMA International Federation of Ship Masters' Associations
IGC Code International Code for the Construction and Equipment of Ships carrying Liquefied Gases in Bulk,IMO
IGO inter-governmental organisation
  IGS inert gas system
  IHB International Hydrographic Bureau
  IHMA International Harbour Masters' Association
  IHO International Hydrographic Organisation
  IICL  Institute of Internatioanl Container Lessors
  IIMS International Institute of Marine Surveyors
  ILO International Labour Organisation
  IMarE Institute of Marine Engineers
  IMB International Maritime Bureau
IMDG Code International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code, IMO
IMLA International Maritime Lecturers Association
  IMO International Maritime Organisation
  IMPA International Maritime Pilots' Association
  IMPA International Marine Purchasing Association
  Inmarsat International Marine Satellite Organisation
  INLS-code International Noxious Liquid Substances
  Intercargo International Association fo Dry Cargo Shipowners
  Intertanko International Association of Independent Tanker Owners
  IOLT  Institute of Logistics and Transport
  IOPC International Oil Pollution Fund
  ISDN integrated services digital network
  ISDP integrated ship design and production
  ISF International Shipping Federation
  ISGOTT International Safety Guide for Oil Tankers and Terminals
ISM Code International Safety Management Code, IMO
ISMA International Ship Managers' Association
  IS information systems
  ISO International Standards Organisation
  ISSA  International Ship Supplies Association
  ISU  International Salvage Union
  ISSN international standard serial number
  IT information technology
  ITF International Transport Workers Federation
  ITOPF International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation
IUA International Underwiting Association
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K KR Korean Register of Shipping (classification society)
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L LAN local apparent noon (nautical),local area network
  Lash lighter aboard ship
  Lat latitute, local apparent time
  LBP length between perpendiculars
  LBS lifeboat stations
  LCB longitudinal centre of buoyancy
  LCD liquid crystal display
  LCF longitudinal centre of flotation
  LDT light displacement tonnage, lost during transhipment
  LED light emitting diode
  LEL lower explosive limit (lower flammable limit)
  LEM lower explosive mixture
  LEO low earth orbit (satellite configuration)
  LF summer fresh water load line (timber)
  LLA Local Lighthouse Authority
  LMT local mean time
  LNG liquefied natural gas
  LO lubricating oil
  LOA length over all
  LOC letter of credit,letter of compliance (USCG)
  LOL limitation of owner's liability, loss of life
  LOP line of position
  LOR letter of readiness
  LOS line of sight, Law of the Sea
  LP liquid petroleum,low pressure
  LPC London Processing Centre
  LPG liquefied petroleum gas
  LR Lloyd's Register (classification society)
  LSA life saving appliances,Lloyd's standard form of salvage agreement
  LST local standard time
  LW low water, winter load line (timber)
  LWL length on water line , low water line
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M MAIB Marine Accident Investigation Branch
  MAIIF Marine Accident Investigators' International Forum
  Marisat maritime satellite system
Marpol 73/78 International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships,IMO
Mb megabyte
  MCA Maritime and Coastguard Agency
  MDO marine diesel oil
MEO medium earth orbit (satellite configuration)
  MEPC Marine Environment Protection Committee, IMO
  MERSAR Merchant Ship Search and Rescue Manual
  MGN  Marine Guidance Note
  MGO Marine Gas Oil
  MIS management information system
  MNI Member of The Nautical Institute
  MOP mobile offshore production
  MOU memorandum of understanding (often refers to PSC)
  MRCC maritime rescue coordination centre
  MSC Marine Safety Committee, IMO
  MSN merchant shipping notice 'M- Notice',UK
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 N NAVTEX navigational and meteorological warning broadcast service
  NCOB no cargo on board
  NDT non-destructive testing
  NECSA  Navigational Electronic Chart System Association
  NFTZ non free trade zone
  NI The Nautical Institute
  NIHQ Nautical Institute Headquarters, London
NK (NKK) Nippon Kaiji Kyokai (classification society)
NM nautical mile
  NMEA National Marine Electronics Association
  NNR national nature reserve
  NOAA National Marine and Atmospheric Administration
  NOR notice of readiness
  NT net tonnage
NUMAST National Union of Mrine, Aviation & Shipping Transport Officers
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 O O/B on board
  OBO ore/bulk/oil carrier
  OCIMF Oil Companies International Marine Forum
  OCR optical character recognition
  OECD Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development
  OMBO  One man Bridge Operation
  OOD officer of the deck
  OOW officer of the watch
OPA 90 Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (USA)
Opec Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries
  OPPR oil pollution preparedness and response
  OPRC International Convention on Oil Pollution Preparedness,Response and Co-operation, IMO
OSV Offshore Support Vessel
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 P P and I (P&I) club protection and indemnity club
Panamax Market category of ships notionally within the limit for transit of the Panama Canal.
PC personal computer
  PFD position fixing device, personal floatation device
  PIANC Permanent International Association of Navigation Congresses
  PLB personal locator beacon
  PMS planned maintenance system
  POB pilot on board/persons on board
  PPE Personal Protective Equipment
PRS Polish Register of Shipping - classification society
  PSC port state control
  PV pressure/vacuum,prime vertical
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 Q QA quality assurance
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 R R&D research and development
  RAM random access memory
  RCC rescue coordination centre
  RCDS Raster Chart Display Systems
  RDF radio direction finder
  RENC  Regional Electronic Navigational Chart Co-Ordinating Centre
  RF range finder, radio frequency
  RINA Royal Institution of Naval Architects, Registro Italiano Navale (classification society)
  RMT National Union of Rail, Maritime And Transport Workers
  RNC  Raster Navigational Chart
ROB remain on board (cargo, bunkers)
  Rom read only memory
  Ro-ro roll on/roll off
  ROV Remotely operated vehicle
  RS Russian Maritime Register of Shipping (classification society)
RT (R/T) radio telegraph, telegraphy, telephone
RTCM Radio Technical Commission for Maritime Services
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 S SAC special area of conservation
  Sam surface to air missile
  SAR search and rescue
  SART search and rescue radar transponder
  SAS safety at sea
  SCOPIC  Special Compensation P&I Clause
  SCR  Special Casualty Representative (P&I)
  SDW summer dead weight
  SENC System Electronic Navigational Chart
  SES satellite earth station,Seafarers' Education Service
  Sire ship's inspection report:a database system of the OCIMF
  SPA special protection area
  SMarT Support for Maritime Training scheme (UK)
  SMC safety management certificate (as per ISM Code)
  SMS safety management system
  Solas International Convention for Safety of Life at Sea,IMO
  SOP standard operating procedure
  SOPEP  Shipboard Oil Pollution Emergency Plan
  SOSREP Secretary of State's Representative for Marine salvage and Intervention
  SPI ship-port interface, IMO
  SPM single point mooring
  STCW International Convention on Standards of Training,Certification and Watchkeeping, IMO
SUBC self-unloading bulk carrier
SWL safe working load
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 T TEU twenty foot equivalent unit (containers)
  TF tropical fresh load line
  TLL timber load line
  TPI tonnes per inch immersion
  TQM total quality management
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 U UBS universal bulk ship
  UEL upper explosive limit
  UFL upper flammable limit
  UKOOA  United Kingdom Offshore Operators Association
  ULBC ultra large bulk carrier
  ULCC ultra large crude carrier
  UMS  Universal Measurement System
  UN United Nations
  Unclos United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea
  UPS uninterrupted power supply
  USCG United States Coast Guard
  UTC universal time (coordinated)
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 V VAT value added tax
  VCB vertical centre of buoyancy
  VCG vertical centre of gravity
  VDR voyage data recorder
  VDU visual display unit
  VLBC very large bulk carrier
  VLCC very large crude carrier
  VP vapour pressure
  VPP variable pitch propeller
  VRP vessel response plan
  VTIS vessel traffic information system
  VTMS vessel traffic management services
  VTS vessel traffic service/system
  VTSS vessel traffic separation scheme
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 W WEND World Electronic Navigation Database
  WHO World Health Organisation
  WL water line
  WMO World Meteorological Organisation
  WMU World Maritime University
  WT watertight
  WWW world wide web (Internet facility)
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 Z ZD zone description
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