CARIS has long included support for Inland Electronic Navigational Chart (IENC) products in our software and has been closely involved and supportive of the Inland ENC Harmonization Group's (IEHG) work. CARIS S-57 Composer and CARIS HPD, the desktop and database solutions for electronic chart production, support the creation of the full range of IENC and IENC overlays, including customized IENC validation checks.
The United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has used CARIS S-57 Composer, and previously CARIS HOM, for the last eight years to create and quality assure IENC datasets. More recently USACE has also used CARIS S-57 Composer to convert older cells to the IENC 2.2 standard.
USACE has been investigating the use of database technology to manage their IENC production for several years. A 2005 study published in Hydro International highlighted the One Feature, One TimeTMcapabilities of CARIS HPD to ingest, store, manage and create IENC and paper products. CARIS also has a white paper on IENC production available, CARIS HPD: A cost-effective production environment for Inland Electronic Navigational Chart production.
CARIS proposed a pilot project to USACE where HPD would be trialled in the Rock Island District to evaluate the workflow and functionality. In December 2012, USACE sent a small team to CARIS USA’s office in Alexandria, Virginia, for a week of CARIS HPD Source Editor and Administration training. This was followed by CARIS HPD Product Editor and Paper Chart Editor training in February 2013. At the same time, Rock Island District set up and loaded the pilot database, followed by continuous source additions and maintenance.
The USACE IENC Program Review meeting in May 2013 saw the HPD solution successfully demonstrated by a Rock Island staff member to the rest of the USACE IENC production team. This demonstration took place over Wi-Fi from a 4G router connecting to the HPD Server over 400 kilometres (249 miles) away in Rock Island.
USACE had a dual production requirement at the time of the pilot project to produce IENC 2.2, as well as the legacy USACE IENC 4.0 for those Electronic Chart Systems (ECS) not yet updated. This need was met by using CARIS HPD Product Editor's Product Mapping functionality with a custom Mapping Rules File to output USACE IENC 4.0 from the IENC 2.2 source data. River chartlets paper products were created using custom symbology files, which are now available in HPD 3.0. During the training courses two more IENC Overlay products were developed and created, USCG Channel Marker Buoys and Low Water Hazards. A custom HPD usage was used to manage the overlay data separately from the base IENC data. Standard CARIS HPD workflows were followed to manage source data and create the three main products, along with the additional output of BSB raster charts using HPD Paper Chart Editor.
Following the training courses, CARIS was asked to provide some advice on streamlining current USACE production using HPD. This resulted in a white paper on production recommendations that included suggestions about potential composition of the production teams, HPD users and roles, and a production workflow, which includes multiple rigorous quality assurance stages leveraging CARIS HPD's built-in functionality.
The pilot project successfully proved that CARIS HPD meets the USACE IENC and paper chart production needs. USACE is now moving to initial production implementation of the system.