No, This Isn’t An Abstract Art Piece… It Is A Map Of The World’s Shipping Routes And It’s AMAZING!

The Marine Traffic map has been developed by a global group of academics to allow us (yes, that means anyone) to track, in real time, the movements of any vessel that is equipped with a position transponder.

The transponder is a device that broadcasts a ship’s position, name, course and speed allowing other vessels to avoid collisions. The ships’ tracks are colored in the maps you will see below according to their type and users can zoom in to see which vessels are moving in that area. Here is the interactive map:

And here are some of the amazing images it produces:

1. Developed by a group of global academics, the Marine Traffic map lets anyone trace a shipping vessel which a position ‘transponder’ similar to those used by aircraft. This broadcasts information such as the ships’ position, name, course and speed allowing other vessels to avoid potentially fatal collisions. Shown here are the routes of the world’s shipping vessels.

No, This Isn't An Abstract Art Piece... It Is A Map Of The World's Shipping Routes And It's AMAZING!

2. A view of shipping routes around the UK. The map relies on a community of data collectors who use an AIS receiver to upload data on a ship’s positions for a given port.

No, This Isn't An Abstract Art Piece... It Is A Map Of The World's Shipping Routes And It's AMAZING!

3. The green lines show ships moving towards and away from the U.S. Busy port activity that includes tankers is shown by the red dots. The map allows you to zoom into these areas to pick specific ships and found out more details about where they came from.

No, This Isn't An Abstract Art Piece... It Is A Map Of The World's Shipping Routes And It's AMAZING!

4. The map shows how the English Channel has become overcrowded as ships become larger, faster and more numerous. The tanker routes coming into London and Dover are particularly heavy with traffic as shown by the red areas.

No, This Isn't An Abstract Art Piece... It Is A Map Of The World's Shipping Routes And It's AMAZING!

5. Clicking on a ship placemark allows users to receive a picture of the ship, speed, vessel type, size, draft and destination. Data received is uploaded in the database in real time and immediately available on the map.

No, This Isn't An Abstract Art Piece... It Is A Map Of The World's Shipping Routes And It's AMAZING!

6. The map refreshes every 100 seconds with updated vessel positions and information if a new ship has entered the range of the search. Shown here are shipping routes around Australia and Papua New Guinea.

No, This Isn't An Abstract Art Piece... It Is A Map Of The World's Shipping Routes And It's AMAZING!

Via The Daily Mail.

Share this amazing map with your friends below — some of them may even have friends and relatives they may want to be able to track.