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Central Ship database


In 2012, the SafeSeaNet High Level Steering Group agreed to set up a correspondence working group to draft data storage and access policy proposals for a Reference Vessel Database (RVD).

The RVD project was developed and made available for testing purposes at the end of 2014. The new service was opened to the users in 2016 and re-named the Central Ship Database (CSD)

The objective of the CSD is to become a reliable database to serve Member States, EU bodies and EMSA applications.


In order to build a complete and up-to-date database, it is necessary to receive and cross check information from several sources. To achieve this objective, the Central Ship Database has been designed as a cooperative database where Member States and EU partners can contribute, and in return, benefit from the available information.

The CSD main process is to compare the information it receives, with the existing CSD records and based on pre-defined rules, to decide whether an update will be performed. Furthermore the CSD enforces the defined data access rights.

SafeSeaNet, THETIS, LRIT and MARINFO (EMSA database fed by information bought from commercial providers) contribute to the Central Ship Database. Ship identifiers and other information contained in VMS and AIS messages will also be integrated in the CSD. To further enrich the CSD sources portfolio, the possibility to connect to additional external databases (e.g. for fishing vessels, national databases) will also be investigated.

Figure 1 below demonstrates the different sources contributing to the development of the CSD:


sources contributing to the CSD

Figure 1: sources contributing to the CSD

To connect and benefit from the Central Ship Database, a set of web services has been designed, in order to allow sharing information via “system to system” interface in an efficient way. In addition, a web interface is accessible through EMSA portal. Figure 2 below shows the web services offered by the CSD:


central ship database01
Figure 2: web services offered by the CSD






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