Following the success of last year's combined National Marine Electronics Association (NMEA) and Radio Technical Commission for Maritime Services (RTCM) Marine Electronics Conference and Expo in West Palm Beach, Fla., the two groups are planning to do it again on Sept. 16-20, 2019, at the Renaissance Hotel in Portsmouth/ Norfolk, Va.
The 2019 NMEA/RTCM Marine Electronics Conference and Expo will include a new lineup of technical and educational sessions in addition to a two-day product exposition, training offered by NMEA and member manufacturers, RTCM presentations, as well as demo boats that will showcase cutting edge technology and new products.
Attendees will have an opportunity to participate in technical and education sessions offered by both organizations. The agenda will allow RTCM and NMEA to hold meetings tailored specifically for their members in addition to presentations of mutual interest.
"We are very excited to be in the Norfolk area, which is a hub for commercial, military, and recreational marine activities. And our water-side hotel venue allows us to have demonstration boats once again," said Mark Reedenauer, NMEA President and Executive Director. "Having RTCM back at the conference adds the heritage and expertise of Coast Guard and Navy sectors of the industry and those experts who represent them."
"We received much positive feedback from our members about last year's annual meeting and bringing next year's meeting to such a strong maritime community at a waterfront location is one of the ways we are enhancing this year's event," RTCM's President Ed Wendlandt said.
New on Monday, Sept. 16, NMEA Level 3 manufacturers will offer half-day technical training sessions for all attendees. These expanded time periods will allow major electronics manufacturers to dive deeper into their wide range of products.
On Tuesday morning, Sept. 17, conference registrants can choose to attend installer and business tracks, RTCM sessions, and manufacturer-specific workshops. The full schedule will be posted on our websites in coming weeks. A continental breakfast beginning at 7 a.m. and coffee breaks are included each morning of the five-day event. Most sessions are repeated twice so that attendees can attend specific areas of interest. Buffet lunches will run each day from 12:15 to 1:30 p.m.
The product expo hall will house marine electronics manufacturers from both the recreational and commercial sectors. Some manufacturers will use the event to roll out new products for 2020. The expo floor will be open on Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons/evenings only. Hours have been extended to run from 1:30 to 6:30 p.m., with receptions both evenings in the expo hall from 4:30 to 6:30, including a one-hour open bar for all attendees from 4:30 to 5:30.
NMEA Level 1 and 2 manufacturer-specific training sessions and the GMDSS Task Force meeting will highlight Thursday, Sep. 19. The NMEA Product of Excellence Awards banquet will be held that evening from 6:30 to 8:30.
On Friday, Sept. 20, NMEA Level 3 manufacturers will again offer half-day technical training sessions for all attendees. RTCM will host the NOAA Beacon Manufacturer Workshop on Friday as well.
NMEA will also offer the following full-day installer training courses, all of which run 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. A separate registration fee applies for these classes:
- NMEA & ABYC Combined Training, Tuesday, Sept. 17 through Friday, Sept. 20
- Basic NMEA Installer Training (MEI), Tuesday, Sept. 17
- Basic NMEA 2000 Installer Training, Wednesday, Sept. 18
- Advanced NMEA Installer Training (AMEI), Thursday, Sept. 19
- Advanced NMEA 2000 Installer Training, Friday, Sept. 20
A preliminary schedule of events for the 2019 NMEA/RTCM Marine Electronics Conference and Expo will be posted on www.expo.nmea.org and more information will be added in the coming weeks. If you have questions, contact the NMEA main office at 410-975-9425, or check the NMEA website at www.nmea.org and the RTCM website at www.rtcm.org.