The International e-Navigation Underway conference took place on board DFDS’ cruise ferry ‘Pearl Seaways’ sailing between Copenhagen and Oslo between 24th and 26th January.
This year, the vessel is part of a Sea Traffic Management (STM) validation project using e-Navigation solutions.
Conference delegates visited the bridge to see the Wärtsilä NACOS Platinum ECDISPILOT transmit the ship’s voyage plan to the VTS in Norway, which is fitted with a Kongsberg system, and to a shore centre in Sweden, using a Saab system. The system also received current safety information in return.
“It is a great step forward for e-Navigation. To see it happen with our own eyes and on a large scale is proof that it is really happening. The STM solutions and services demonstrated on board the conference ship ‘Pearl Seaways’ use the maritime connectivity platform (MCP), and follow IALA guidance. Interaction between ship and shore using globally harmonised digital services will improve the efficiency and safety of future sea traffic. ” said Michael Card, Deputy Secretary General, IALA.
“Wärtsilä is pushing the maritime industry towards the digital future. STM has developed standards to ensure interoperability between system and service providers, as the demonstration validates. The co-operation between public organisations and us industry partners has proven to be a fast way to reach working standards that are easily adopted, ” added Karl-Christian Ehrke, Product Manager for Integrated Navigation Systems, Wärtsilä Marine Solutions.
“As DFDS see it, with EU’s single window being an example, we see a growing demand for digital solutions for shipping and for aligning digital communication. But we are not there yet. In order to take full advantage of real-time exchange of data between authorities, service providers, ships and shipping companies, we need a close co-operation between all those stakeholders.
“We see that STM simplifies communication with shoreside actors with value adding services making the maritime business more efficient, helping to reduce costs and at the same time adding to the safety of our ships. This is the beginning of a long and exciting journey towards more efficient and safer ship operations, reduced administration and, in the longer run, more automated operations,” said Niels Smedegaard, CEO and President, DFDS.
‘Pearl Seaways’ also shares part of her voyage plan with all other nearby ships over AIS. If the ships are STM-enabled, they can see up to seven route segments of ‘Pearl Seaways’ voyage plan. That will help the crew to predict planned intentions of other ships and calculation of meeting points, determine the closest point of approach (CPA), the time it will happen and at an early stage identify and avoid close situations.
The STM test beds will include 300 ships, 13 ports and five shore centres