Rendez-vous uses 100-watt digital radios to create a private network amongst a yacht and her tenders. The technology, proven in the railway industry, has a 20-mile range from the mothership and farther if another tender is in between. Basic tracking information is cleverly sent in AIS data format so that any AIS-enabled plotter/computer that's also wired to any of the network's Rendez-vous radios can monitor it. But SeaCAS also offers a dedicated PC program that can display the various data and control options that can be fed to an asset's transceiver via multiple relay, analog, and NMEA 0183 ports. The possibilities include minding a PWC's fuel level and "pick-me-up button" or having a tender send real-time depth info back to the mothership as it explores a questionably charted anchorage. Rendez-vous also has power-saving abilities like report intervals based on speed, good for towing, and a sleep mode. A complete two-transceiver setup costs $9,999, and there are kits for various-size additional fleet assets.
This article originally appeared in the September 2007 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.