About Us


The Radio Technical Commission for Maritime Services (RTCM) is a 501(c)(3) international non-profit scientific, professional and educational organization.  RTCM members are organizations (not individuals) that are both non-government and government.  Although started in 1947 as a U.S. government advisory committee, RTCM is now an independent organization supported by its members from all over the world.

We keep our members involved on regional and international maritime radio navigation and radio communication policy issues, regulatory changes, and technical standards development.

Our Special Committees provide a forum in which government and non-government members work together to develop technical standards and consensus recommendations in regard to issues of particular concern.

We are actively engaged in the development of international standards for maritime radio navigation and radio communication systems through our involvement in:

  • the International Maritime Organization (IMO)
  • Cospas-Sarsat
  • the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC)
  • the International Organization for Standardization (ISO)
  • the European Telecommunication Standards Institute (ETSI)
  • the International Loran Association (ILA)

 We also contribute to the relevant work of:

  • the International Telecommunications Union (ITU)
  • the International Hydrographic Organization (IHO)
  • the International Association of Aids to Navigation and Lighthouse Authorities (IALA)
  • the Comité International Radio-Maritime (CIRM)
  • the National Marine Electronics Association (NMEA)
  • the Mobile Satellite Users Association (MSUA)


 RTCM has over 140 member organizations, including:

  • Manufacturers of radio navigation and radio communication systems,
  • Government agencies concerned with standards for maritime radio navigation and radio communication systems,
  • Government agencies and commercial entities involved in operation of maritime radio navigation and radio communication systems,
  • Associations with an interest in maritime radio navigation and radio communication systems and related public policy,
  • Ship owners and operators,
  • Educational institutions, and
  • Sales and service providers


The RTCM Annual Assembly Meeting and Conference, which is open to both RTCM members and non-members, is structured to provide attendees with an overall update on the changing world of maritime radio commmunications and radio navigation. The program includes a series of paper presentations, panel sessions, workshops, and RTCM Special Committee meetings dealing with issues of current concern to the maritime community. Other organizations such as the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), the National Marine Electronics Association (NMEA), the U.S. National GMDSS Implementation Task Force, and the NOAA SARSAT Beacon Manufacturers Workshop, also typically hold meetings in conjunction with the RTCM Assembly. All attendees are invited to participate in all sessions. Through the cooperation of RTCM members exhibitors, latest technology providing radio communications and radio navigation equipment capability capabilities and services are on display.


September 2019 - RTCM held a joint conference with NMEA at the Renaissance Portsmouth-Norfolk Waterfront Hotel Conference Center in Portsmouth, Virginia between September 16-20.

This year's joint 2020 Annual Assembly and Conference with NMEA will be held in Orlando, FL at the DOUBLETREE BY HILTON HOTEL AT THE ENTRANCE TO UNIVERSAL ORLANDO - September 21-25

 If you are interested in presenting a paper or exhibiting please contact [email protected]



 RTCM is chartered in the District of Columbia, USA, as a 501(c)(3) non-profit scientific and educational organization, focusing on all aspects of maritime radio communications, radio navigation, and related technologies. Founded in 1947 as a Federal Communications Commission advisory committee, it is now an independent non-profit membership organization. RTCM standards are incorporated by reference into U.S. Federal Communications Commission and U.S. Coast Guard regulations. They have been used as the basis for requirements in standards of the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), which are now mandatory under Chapters IV and V of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS).


The Radio Technical Commission for Maritime Standards is a 501(c)(3).  If you would like to make a donation, you can donate to our organization via PayPal using the link below 

Donate to RTCM via PayPal:


You can also find our organization on Amazon Smile.  If you setup your Amazon Smile to donate to RTCM and shop on smile.amazon.com, Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to RTCM.

 Thank you for your support.

Click Below to access the RTCM Interactive Guides:

GMDSS Interactive Guides