Furuno’s New WS200 Brings NMEA 2000 Ultrasonic Weather to Your Helm

Furuno WS200 Ultrasonic Weather Instrument

Furuno WS200 Ultrasonic Weather Instrument

Actually, it brings ultrasonic weather data to your helm. Are we straight with that now?  Okay. The basic ultrasonic instrument has been around for several years — the most recent version, still available, is the PB150, a NMEA 0183-compatible unit –  but the WS200 is a significant upgrade, both in sensors and networking. It’s also a little more expensive, with the listed retail price of $1,395.

New Features

These include a three-axis compass (used for internal true wind calculations), a three-axis accelerometer (for pitch & roll), a yaw rate gyro (for rate of turn), as well as integrating the latest generation Furuno GPS/WAAS receiver. Another key feature of the WS200 is the capability to output weather information in either NMEA0183 or NMEA2000. According to Furuno,

“We’ve also incorporated a unique in-line terminating resistor, allowing the WS200 sensor to be directly connected to any NavNet 3D DRS Radar. This feature allows for a simpler and more flexible installation, without the need to run cables all the way to the main processor. Using this configuration, NMEA2000 data is easily converted and distributed throughout the NavNet 3D Ethernet network. (Please note that while the WS200 has passed NMEA2000 Protocol Certification, we classify it as a CANBUS product, as it is not fully NMEA2000 Certified, due to the fact that we enhanced the product by adding this terminating resistor capability.)”

Complete Feature List

Here’s the rundown on the complete feature set:

True wind speed and direction
Apparent wind speed and direction
Barometric pressure
Air temperature
Wind chill temperature
Measures wind speed and direction ultrasonically
Internal WAAS/EGNOS GPS
Three-axis solid-state compass (used for internal wind calculations)
Three-axis accelerometer provides stabilized pitch and roll info
Yaw rate gyro provides rate of turn data
Outputs both NMEA0183 and NMEA2000 data
Plastic housing is less prone to lightning strikes
WeatherCaster software
Simplified, flexible installation w/unique terminating resistor
Maintenance-free operation with no moving parts

If you’d like to see some suggested wiring diagrames of Furuno-related installations, you can download this pdf file.  For more info on the system, check out the product page on Furuno’s website.

Copyright © 2010 by OceanLines LLC.  All rights reserved.

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About the Author

About the Author: Tom Tripp is the owner of OceanLines LLC, the publisher of OceanLines and founder of Marine Science Today. He is an award-winning marine journalist, science writer and long-time public communications specialist. His PR career and much of his writing stems from the fact that he loves to explain stuff. It all began when he and his brother Mark threw all of Mom's tomatoes at the back wall of the house. . . .

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