26 February 2019
Applicability: Shipowners and operators
On 6 April 2019, how Global Positioning System (GPS) devices display time may be affected by a change in the GPS navigation message signals.
The way GPS broadcasts time and date information involves a 10-bit week number (0-1,023), which resets or “rolls over” every 1,024 weeks or approximately 19.6 years. The next week number rollover will occur on 6 April 2019.
The 2019 GPS Week Number Rollover could have a potential effect upon GPS receivers (including GPS sensors and GPS receivers embedded within multi-function displays, chart-plotting products, AIS receivers and VHF radios) and any of their features dependent on date/time information.
Advice to shipowners
Owners of ships fitted with equipment reliant on GPS signals, should:
- Ensure the equipment’s firmware is up to date
- Contact the manufacturer to ensure the equipment will not be adversely affected by this event.
For further information:
See Department of Homeland Security release of the memorandum titled U.S. Owners and Operators Using GPS to Obtain Time
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