A quick tour of the Nautical Solution

This contains a high-level overview of the user interfaces and capabilities that are added to ArcGIS after installing and enabling the Nautical Solution extension.

Technology overview

The Nautical Solution relies on several components of ESRI technology to form an integrated framework of functionality for the management of nautical chart data and production.

Technology from ArcGIS Server; ArcGIS Desktop; and ArcGIS Desktop extensions, including ESRI Production Mapping, Workflow Manager, Task Assistant, Data Reviewer, Data Interoperability, and 3D Analyst, are all part of the ESRI Nautical Solution. The Nautical Solution leverages technology from ArcGIS Desktop and ESRI Production Mapping components to provide a fully integrated solution for nautical chart production.

The main application interface that a user will interact with in the Nautical Solution is ArcMap. ArcMap is the single environment for data conversion, data editing, S-57 production, chart production and validation. ArcCatalog can be accessed through ArcMap and provides a window into all your spatial data and how it is organized.

ArcCatalog with ArcMap

There is a great deal of functionality and capabilities of the Nautical Solution that are integrated with ArcGIS yet not readily exposed to the user. However, some of the components that are accessible with the Nautical Solution are

Product library

Product library is fully integrated into ArcMap and is exposed as a window similar to the Table of Contents. It is required for the creation and management of all products with the Nautical Solution. Product library has extensive metadata about the products, is configurable to support multiple production applications, and serves as a document management system for supporting files related to products. More information on the full uses and capabilities of product library is here.


The Nautical Solution is designed to support the production life cycle of navigational products that include raster, electronic, and hard-copy charts. The workflows that support this production life cycle are broadly categorized by data editing, product management, quality assurance, and workflow management. The Nautical Solution comes with a variety of tools across the ArcGIS framework to support these workflows.

Toolbar settings

The toolbars commonly used for nautical data and cartographic production are conveniently organized for a variety of workflows under Customize > Production > Toolbar Settings.

Nautical Toolbar Settings


Toolbars commonly used for Nautical data production include

  • Production Editing
  • Nautical
  • Nautical Cartography
  • Nautical DNC
  • Nautical Editing Cartography
  • Nautical S-57
  • Nautical Unit Selection

The Nautical Solution includes toolbar settings for standard hydrographic data editing. The primary editing toolbars for hydrographic data editing are

Production Editing toolbar

Nautical toolbar

The Nautical Solution includes tools and functionality to create ENC and AML products in S-57 transfer standard format. S-57 data production involves the use of the Production Editing and Nautical editing toolbars as well as the Nautical S-57 toolbar.

Nautical S-57 toolbar

Traditional nautical chart production with the Nautical Solution is supported through the tools available on the Nautical Cartography and Nautical Editing Cartography toolbars.

Nautical Cartography toolbar

Nautical Editing Cartography toolbar

Digital nautical chart (DNC) production with the Nautical Solution is supported through the DNC tools available on the Nautical DNC toolbar.

Nautical DNC toolbar

Geoprocessing tools and shortcut menus

The Nautical Solution also comes with a variety of tools accessible through shortcut menus in ArcCatalog, and ArcMap. Some examples include Import > S-57 to Geodatabase within ArcCatalog and Populate within the Product Library window in ArcMap. Geoprocessing tools and models that are specially designed for Nautical Solution can be accessed through the Nautical toolbox and include toolsets for cartography and data editing.

Nautical toolbox

ESRI Nautical Solution data models

The data models provided with the ESRI Nautical Solution are optimized for nautical product generation, maintenance, and publishing. The data models vary, depending on the type of product being generated (ENC, AML, DNC, Chart). For more information on the data models in the ESRI Nautical Solution, please check here.

Cartographic features

The ESRI Nautical Solution is highly optimized for cartographic output. Taking advantage of representation database-driven cartography for the INT1 symbol specifications, the Nautical Solution is able to efficiently assign and update feature symbology. In addition to symbol specifications, the Nautical Solution provides grids (INT2) and chart elements to provide an efficient chart generation process.

INT1 representations


The validation of hydrographic data is supported through the use of geodatabase domains, topology rules, and preconfigured, automated batch checks. The batch checks include validation of feature attributes, geometry, and feature relationships. In addition, each of the NIS, ENC, AML, and chart data models include verification fields to track which features have been reviewed based on your Quality Assurance and Quality Control (QA/QC) standards. Any modifications you make to a feature that holds a verified value of True will automatically be returned to False. When a verification field is set to False, that feature will disable the ability to post changes in an ArcSDE environment and will hold back from getting exported to an S-57 cell.