OpenPlotter3 – AIS & GPS on RPi3B


Fig.1 OpenPlotter3 AIS & GPS on RPi3B Equipment Setup

Recently I revisited OpenPlotter after a two year interval to see what had changed in the latest version 3 (Ref.1/3). I tested the Starter and Headless images and setup AIS & GPS on RPi4/OpenCPN. In 2021 I had looked at various aspects of version 2 (Ref.4/5). In this post I will look at OpenPlotter3 Starter 32bit image on RPi3B and AIS/GPS on OpenCPN as shown in Figure 1.

OpenPlotter3 on RPi3B

Fig.2 OpenPlotter3 Settings Menu
Fig.3 OpenPlotter3 SDR VHF Menu Showing AIS & GQRX Installeded
Fig.4 OpenPlotter3 SDR VHF Menu AIS/Processes
Fig.5 OpenPlotter3 Serial Menu Showing GPS Setup
Fig.6 OpenPlotter3 Signal K Server Menu Showing AIS/gps Activity
Fig.7 OpenPlotter3 OpenCPN Connections Menu
Fig.8 OpenPlotter3 OpenCPN Display

Figure 2 shows the applications installed after turning up OP3/32bit Starter image. I installed PyPilot/I2C Sensors/GPIO & SDR VHF. Figure 3 shows the SDR VHF menu, I then installed Gqrx. AIS and Gqrx both use the RTL-SDR, so you have to activate one or the other. Figure 4 shows activation of the AIS process. Figure 5 shows the Serial menu, where the GPS connection is given an alias and setup for NEMA0183/4800bps. If the AIS/GPS are setup correctly, then you should see entries on the Signal K Server menu as in Figure 6. Figure 7 shows the OpenCPN Connections menu for the Signal K server. Figure 8 shows the GPS location (red boat) and AIS contacts in the Toronto Harbour area.

Fig.9 OpenPlotter3 – AIS & GPS on RPi3B

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#1. – “OpenPlotter3 – Marine NAVTEX”

#2. – “OpenPlotter3 – Marine HF Weather Fax”

#3. – “OpenPlotter3 – Headless for GPS & AIS on RPi4”

#4. – “OpenPlotter – AIS Connection”

#5. – “OpenPlotter – GPS Connection”

By Jeremy Clark

Jeremy Clark is a Senior Telecommunications Engineer and Advanced Amateur Radio Operator VE3PKC. He is the author of E-Books on Telecommunications, Navigation & Electronics.