Widely used by bass fishermen, these fishfinders have very sophisticated software to discriminate fish from other objects. Some models are sidelooking. Liquid crystal displays are used because other displays wash out in sunlight.
These are high power scanning sonars capable of detecting fish up to 6000 feet away. Peak output power may be as high as 10kW. Typically the transducer will be in an oil filled dome that is lowered through a hole in the hull when in use. Information is displayed on a radar type screen.
Downriggers are small winches, which may be motorized, that lower a lead weight on a steel line. The baited end of a fishing line is attached to the weight, which is lowered to the desired depth. If a fish takes the bait, a friction device releases the line. The most advances units track a preset distance above the bottom, changing depth as necessary.
Traditional marine radar uses a long persistance screen to display information. The display is dim and fades rapidly, requiring a hood and a dedicated operator. This unit uses a video monitor that holds the display and is bright enough to be viewed in normal light. This allows the pilot to use the screen and eliminates the need for a dedicated operator. It also has sophisticated alarm features.
Fishing boats and work boats are subject to changing environments that may change the stability of the craft. This may be from ice on the superstructure, shifting loads, or changing liquid levels in tanks. Each year, several boats capsize unexpectedly, usually losing most of the crew. This unit monitors the stability of the boat on a continuing basis and sounds an alarm if the stability drops below a set level.
One solution to motion sickness on pleasure boats is a fin stabilization system. Hydraulically actuated fins move under electronic control to dampen the roll.
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