Vesper Marine, a leading manufacturer of innovative marine safety products, announced today that its black box AIS XB-8000 WiFi Transponder is now shipping in Europe.

Enabling WiFi access to critical AIS safety information from any device with chartplotting software, the new compact Vesper Marine AIS XB-8000 black box device offers boaters a display-less Class B AIS transponder with complete wireless interaction.

The feature-packed Vesper Marine AIS XB-8000 can be accessed and controlled remotely, anywhere on a boat, via a variety of WiFi 802.11g/b enabled devices including smartphones, tablets and laptops, or through integration with other marine electronics. It is compatible with apps such as iNavX™ marine navigation for the Apple* iPad* allowing users to remotely access AIS information on other applications. It also features a free downloadable App for the iPhone* and iPad* that can be used to configure, monitor, and interact with the XB-8000. The App also serves as a remote control, allowing the user to enable or disable features such as the silent mode. The XB-8000 silent mode feature can also be controlled via USB or an easily wired switch. In addition, the XB-8000 offers NMEA 2000 support to integrate AIS data with other NMEA 2000-compatible equipment, is NMEA 0183 compatible, and has waterproof USB connectivity.

The XB-8000’s compact design minimises the space required for installation and service. All cable connections are made within the footprint of the XB-8000, eliminating the need for extra space around the device for cable ends, and ensuring a tidy installation.

The XB-8000 is delivered complete with a high sensitivity externally mounted GPS antenna with 30’ of cable specially designed for easier routing through small holes and tiny spaces.

The highly sophisticated, Vesper Marine XB-8000 enhances the flexibility, interactivity and convenience of accessing relevant, critical AIS safety information on the water. Jeff Robbins, CEO, Vesper Marine comments: “We are excited to put our new AIS XB-8000 WiFi Transponder into the hands of our customers. “It provides easy wireless accessibility to AIS information for peace of mind and enjoyment on the water.”

Harnessing the power of Vesper Marine’s sophisticated WatchMate technology, the AIS XB-8000 incorporates a 50-channel GPS receiver and two-channel AIS receiver with high sensitivity for excellent range and timely, accurate information. The XB-8000 incorporates Vesper Marine's new multiprocessor architecture for fast performance ensuring reliable AIS data and instant data acquisition. The system transmits a boat’s name, size, position, speed and course over AIS channels while simultaneously providing the timely and easy-to-process information boaters need to interpret potential hazards and react accordingly. All Vesper Marine AIS devices receive AIS Class A and Class B vessel position; voyage data; navigation aids; AIS safety messages; and are fully compatible with AIS SART and MOB devices. In addition, they support meteorological and hydrographical information (where available).

The AIS XB-8000 WiFi Transponder has an operating temperature range of -13 to 131 degrees Fahrenheit, is waterproof to the IPx7 standard and is protected by a one-year limited warranty.

The Vesper Marine AIS XB-8000 WiFi Transponder can be purchased from authorised Vesper Marine dealers and distributors throughout the UK and Europe starting October 29th, 2012 and from North American distributors later in the year pending FCC approvals.