The 2022 SMART4SEA Forum took place virtually from 23 to 24 of February 2022, focusing on key smart shipping issues and latest updates of industry’s digital transformation and technological trends.
The event was organized by SAFETY4SEA having as lead sponsors the following organizations: MacGregor and SQEMARINE. Other sponsors were: Alandia, ARCADIA SHIPMANAGEMENT CO. LTD, Blue Planet Shipping Ltd, Capital-Executive Ship Management Corp., Capital Gas Ship Management Corp., Capital Shipmanagement, Columbia Ship Management, Diaplous Group, Dorian LPG, Eastern Mediterranean Maritime Limited (EASTMED), EURONAV, Latsco Marine Management Inc., MINTRA, NAVTOR, North of England P&I Club, RINA, RISK4SEA, ShipIn Systems, Standard Club, Steamship Mutual, SUN ENTERPRISES LTD, THOME GROUP, Tototheo Maritime, UK Club, Wärtsilä, WinGD.
Day 01 - Wednesday February 23
Panel #1 – Shipping 4.0
The 4th Industrial Revolution is taking place, bringing exponential changes to the way we live, work and relate to one another. It is marked by emerging technology breakthroughs in many fields. Contrary to common belief that shipping operates in a traditional model, the COVID-19 pandemic seems to have forced even this ‘old-fashioned’ industry to embrace innovation and show no resist to this revolution.
Speaker of Panel 1: Jillian Carson-Jackson, President , Nautical Institute; Capt. Ahmed Khan, Director of Fleet Management, ShipIn Systems; Dominic Ng, Head of Solutions Advisory, Wärtsilä Voyage; Manish Singh, CEO, Ocean Technologies Group; Dimitris Theodossiou, Managing Director, Danaos Management S.A provided their insights on the COVID impact and referred to key barriers and drivers for industry’s digitalization.
As noted, when the pandemic broke out, the industry was already heading towards digitalization. In essence, the pandemic accelerated the process, providing additional opportunities for collaboration and making stakeholders to feel more comfortable with new technologies and share ideas. Although, crew changes created major disruption in ship operations and associated problems, the pandemic helped us to learn to work remotely, manage remote business and propelled connectivity in shipping. Along with challenges, this situation also brought remote surveys, new installations, uptake in telemedicine and many other positive outcomes. Overall, the pandemic didn’t bring revolution but evolution of technologies, as well as more capabilities for seafarers.
Now the industry is accustomed to this new digitalized environment. In the coming years, speakers expect decarbonization efforts to top the agenda. With or without the pandemic, the digital journey will move across many stages, industry‘s traditional model is falling behind; now there is different terminology, the overall thinking has changed, there is uptake of autonomous, digital training, AI – this is where industry is now moving on. Thus, we need to address the regulatory, technological and operational aspects of the new autonomous vessels. Also, it is vital to focus on skills and training and think how to help all maritime professionals to adapt. However, at the same time, considering that shipping does not acknowledge the pioneers of the sector, it is time to change that mindset and celebrate the innovations. There are many emerging technologies, we have an opportunity to see what these are doing in other industries such as autonomous systems and stay up-to-date with the developments. Shipping 4.0 brings autonomous systems which also bring complex systems; so we have to reconsider the whole infrastructure and shed focus on automation and machine learning. In that regard, we need to realize the importance of human capital and upskilling to the new systems and equipment and help people onboard and ashore to cultivate critical thinking, situational awareness and other soft skills.
Vassilios Demetriades, Shipping Deputy Minister to the President, Republic of Cyprus, introduced the C.O.M.E. Platform, a key initiative that considers the key issues of industry’s green and digital transformation, safety and security, seafarers and coastal navigation, training and certification and provides opportunity to users for open dialogue and feedback, sharing ideas and communicating proposals.
Osher Perry, CEO, ShipIn Systems, explained how visual Fleet Management improves fleet Safety and Security, highlighting the importance to equip seafarers with advanced tools. Representing a digital bridge between sea and shore, he mentioned the benefits in reducing incidents by 42%, increasing asset utilization and throughput by 8% and delivering unprecedented ship-shore visibility.
Ornulf Jan Rodseth, Senior Scientist, SINTEF Ocean, talked about ‘The IMO Reference Data Model’ which emerged as a necessity to coordinate successfully the many different initiatives and standards, considering the heavy drive towards maritime digitalization. This model is being picked by the industry and may be used to leverage cooperation.
Andreas Chrysostomou, Chief Strategy Officer, Tototheo Maritime, presented how technology is shipping’s perpetual gamechanger. In the past, ships being on the oceans needed the technologies to work properly and fully to be repairable. However, today, ships are more than that; they are fully connected having the latest technologies onboard. Shipping ‘s deep-rooted dependance on technology is set to become mission critical, thus adopting the right tools is vital for success across future integrated communication and supply chains.
Panel #2 Gamechanger Technologies
Shipping has shown an increased interest in blockchain, AI, VR, IoT and other revolutionary technologies over the last years. However, these remain unfamiliar for the shipping industry. It is about time for the industry to consider their potential efficiencies and benefits in order such gamechanger technologies to become more pervasive and help shipping’s digital transformation.
Speakers of Panel 2: Sanjeev Namath, Chief Business Officer, Alpha Ori Technologies Pte; Andreas Chrysostomou, Chief Strategy Officer, Tototheo Maritime; Markus Wenig, Team Leader, Autonomous Systems, WinGD; Iason Zaharioudakis, Operational Technology & Energy Manager, Latsco Marine Management Inc.focused on best practices in order new technologies to assist industry, highlighting the need for standardization.
At first, experts said that industry sees significant progress with regards to emerging technologies which are driven by regulation and the need for decarbonization. Data is a big changer for the industry as it provides the big picture of shore ship connection. The need to adopt greener design and fuels and gain vessel performance and energy efficiency are also drivers which embrace data sharing and green investments. On top of that, we have to consider that the new generation now prefer companies of good reputation, those which adopt sustainable practices and strive for green footprint, thus, ESG tops the agenda. However, the adoption of gamechanger technology for shipping comes with barriers as well. A key barrier concerns data integrity. Although we have succeeded in gathering and transferring data, the main point is the accuracy and data reliability. Furthermore, the hard logistics of green fuels also pose barriers while we have no clarity for the new fuels and their technologies yet. Considering that all new technologies are digital, the security of data is another concern. Experts noted that digital transformation comes with cultural and organizational transformation. As such, the mindset to adopt digitalization is another barrier and there is need for change management and be open to new applications.
Highlighting that lack of standardization is a key concern, experts suggested ways to improve considering that we need accurate measurements and communication. This is an issue for discussion in IMO along other stakeholders while makers should join the discussion as well and provide comments, speakers suggested. A hybrid knowledge of how shipping works and how technology can assist towards can bring value to the industry and it is positive that several international bodies drive the dialogue for data standardization and there is collaboration towards. Concluding the panel, experts expect by 2030 a combination of technologies that will maximize value, for example combining Blockchain with IoT, big data and machine learning. With regards to autonomous vessels, experts expect great progress even crew-less ships; nonetheless there are several social aspects to consider since it is a matter of trust, regulation and insurance.
Stefan Goranov, Program Portfolio Manager, Digital & Hybrid, WinGD, presented an energy efficiency/hybrid technology that enables a system to maximize efficiency and explained his company’s process when developing such solutions, highlighting the key areas which are examined in order to ensure optimal system control, system decomposition and other important factors.
Vladimir Kolyada, Fleet Operations Solution Manager, Wärtsilä Voyage, presented the ‘BridgeMate’ solution which brings change in navigation as it has been developed considering users’ needs who require extra back up in case of emergency, user friendly and native interface and en effective smart decision support tool on the whole bridge, including wings.
Ulf Siwe, Communications Officer of Sea Traffic Management, Swedish Maritime Administration, talked about the importance of information sharing, providing examples of what ships do in real life to highlight that data should be handled differently to avoid risks. For successful information sharing, global standards for ships and ports, global reliable infrastructure and software are vital.
Ross Millar, Master Mariner and Loss Prevention Associate, Steamship Insurance Management Services Limited, highlighted the importance of raising awareness on Cyber Security. Cyber security can significantly affect business operations and as ships are becoming more connected, potential vulnerabilities pose threats that can result to major costs for the operators. Human end users are considered as the weakest link but with proper training, they can gain knowledge and identify any potential threats.
Panel #3 Cyber security
Every business and every individual can be subject to cyber threats. Cyber-crime is a massive business; hackers are very well-organized, and they put a lot of time and effort before launching a cyber-attack. The last couple years, cyber security has become a significant challenge for the maritime industry as well. From January 1st of January 2021, a new era has begun for ship operators as SMS now feature cyber security.
Speakers of Panel 3: Jim McKee, CEO, Red Sky Alliance; Jakob P. Larsen, Head of Maritime Safety & Security, BIMCO; Fotis Tsitsirigkos, Fleet IT Manager, Euronav; Michael Vrettos, Cyber Security Expert, RINA, talked about latest cyber security challenges and suggested best practices to ensure cyber resilience onboard and ashore.
At first, all panelists agreed that the pandemic made companies across all business sectors to rethink and re-assess their cyber security policies. Remote working made corporate systems more vulnerable to threats. In particular, during the pandemic, people defences went down due to the fear of COVID-19, giving ground to phishing. Ensuring cyber security awareness became a big challenge and only if people are more educated and aware, they can be more protected. Also, it depends on the IT infrastructure that there is in place; bigger organizations are more equipped. This is why cyber resiliency has become the new norm and a key area of focus in order companies to be able to bounce back after a cyber attack.
Even though shipping was not ready for remote working, it quickly adjusted to the situation and realized that planning for cyber hygiene is vital. There are many aspects to consider for planning and invest in proper training. For example, people now post everything at social media and have become vulnerable targets to hackers; as such, companies need to consider human factor and provide filters and tools. In other words, the development of cyber security culture is vital. People should be aware of the treats and feel comfortable with the procedures. In that regard, the social engineering is very important and thus it is vital to educate people with real examples inside the company to be able to realize the threats. Considering that we now witness increased connectivity and bandwidth onboard, ships may become a highway open to attacks. To prevent this, as best practices, shipping companies should make sure they have compliance from an accredited body; to focus on education, training, awareness; to develop tools that provide functionality to third parties and ensure security and evaluation; to ensure complete back up of the data; to consider lessons learned and share experience and; most importantly, to focus on access management as part of cyber resilience. Finally, shipping companies may also consider cyber insurance.
Day 01 - SMART4SEA Awards
Wärtsilä Voyage received the 2022 SMART4SEA E-Navigation Award for its ‘Wärtsilä BridgeMate’ providing situational awareness, decision support and docking aid via one app, as part of the Fleet Operations Solution (FOS) integrated operations and navigation platform. Other short-listed nominees for this category were: Singapore Centre of Excellence in Maritime Safety (CEMS), Hamburg Port Authority, Ports of Auckland and Satakunta University of Applied Sciences.
Marlink received the 2022 SMART4SEA Connectivity Award for its ‘‘Network of Networks’ standalone solution that supports digitalization by combining satellite signals from GEO, LEO, MEO, 4/5G and WiFi service providers into one seamless service. Other short-listed nominees for this category were: Columbia Shipmanagement, Kongsberg Digital, Navarino and UK Hydrographic Office (UKHO).
WinGD received the 2022 SMART4SEA Energy Efficiency Award for offering advanced hybrid solutions that surpass IMO’s 2030 carbon intensity targets, meet EEXI reduction requirements and safeguard strong performance. Other short-listed nominees for this category were: ABS, DeepSea Technologies, Propulsion Analytics and Weathernews.
Navarino received the 2022 SMART4SEA Cyber Security Award for offering a complete portfolio of maritime cyber security services, featuring Angel, which is for vessel cyber security and Angel Office, which is a 24×7 Cyber Security Defense solution. Other short-listed nominees for this category were: ABS, CyberOwl, Cydome and GTMaritime.
Mintra received the 2022 SMART4SEA Training Award for offering new extensive Maritime Course Library, ensuring training can be carried out both online and offline, onshore as well as onboard the vessel, including also ECIDS type specific training. Other short-listed nominees for this category were: NSBacademy, OneLearn Global, Seably and V.Group.
MacGregor received the 2022 SMART4SEA Technology Award for developing OnWatch Scout (OWS), a service which uses data analytics to help shipowners and operators develop more proactive and condition-based intelligent strategies for maintenance. Other short-listed nominees for this category were: Kongsberg Digital, M2Intelligence, Sea Machines and Wärtsilä Voyage.
Manish Singh, CEO, OCEAN Technologies Group, received the 2022 SMART4SEA Personality Award, sponsored by MacGregor, for taking outstanding action to shape the vision of digitalization within the maritime industry, investing in partnering relationships with key stakeholders and acquiring further capabilities and digital technologies to deliver new maritime solutions.
Tore Morten Olsen, President, Maritime, Marlink received the 2022 SMART4SEA Leadership Award, sponsored by Macgregor, for setting the example for a change of mindset on IT within the maritime industry, by developing IT Link, Marlink’s digital enablement strategy which allows shipping companies to develop, test and deploy IT solutions fleetwide in a secure way.
Day 02 - Thursday February 24
Panel #4 E-Navigation & Future of Maritime Safety
In today’s smart environment, e-navigation remains a controversial subject of discussion, with some supporting that its aim is to assist operations, while others believe that seafarers may find it difficult to trust an autonomous system. ECDIS is one example to this; although it considered as a key milestone that helped the industry to move forward with navigational safety, it comes with challenges while many agree that it transformed ship bridges into cockpits.
Speakers of Panel 4: Marvin Bielek, Nautical Author, Mintra; Capt. John Dolan, Deputy Director, Loss Prevention, Standard Club; Bjørn Åge Hjøllo, Chief Sustainability Officer, NAVTOR; Capt. Dimitrios Melas, Master, Angelicoussis Group; Capt. Pantelis Patsoulis, Vetting and Nautical Manager, Euronav, examined the main challenges that top the e-navigation agenda and discussed key issues to consider in the coming years.
E-navigation increases the complexities on the bridge which make it challenging for the human element. All panelists agreed that e-navigation was not affected by the pandemic, only as far as it concerns the human element and their wellbeing. E-navigation is a complex area, the technology is available and economically is feasible; however, the broad adoption depends on the will and understanding of autonomous shipping. Nowadays, there are many providers and systems onboard for monitoring and decision making, for preparing passing plans by providing many layers of information. Also automated reporting is in place, but standardization remains a key issue. At the same time, effective training and practical expertise are vital, as well as uniformity in order for seafarers to use equipment effectively. Experts highlighted that there are still many barriers to overcome, such as legislation and harmonization.
Nonetheless, it is important to look at the bigger picture and consider why we aim for autonomous vessels. As we are not in a hurry, we should think as an industry all safety issues and move closer to a bridge centered design. Also, considering the ergonomics of autonomous ships, it is important to become more realistic and embrace a human centered design while the current IMO requirements should be updated in order to have a better and efficient bridge team onboard. The development of technology is faster than legislation concerning these systems; as such, e-navigation training needs to be constantly revised. Vessels have moved away from the conventional training where STCW is sufficient. Now, they have moved to a complex area where systems onboard are complex and sophisticated, therefore expertise is needed. Technology is leading the industry, but without doubt, traditional skills are still useful. Overall, experts agreed that e-navigation is quite mature now and it needs industry’s feedback to move forward. Technological advancements are developed to enhance safety but at the same time create vulnerabilities. In this context, we need a balance; not only to search for new technology but also how to consider the human behaviour and tend for a more sustainable e-navigation for the future.
Bjørn Åge Hjøllo, Chief Sustainability Officer, NAVTOR, gave a presentation on how to simplify sustainable shipping. He presented tools that can provide all information needed to plan optimal vessel voyages in one place, ensuring safe and efficient passage planning with one planning station for optimum fuel efficient route which meets ETA (Estimated Time of Arrival).
Päivi Haikkola, Leadership and innovation professional in maritime industries, Head of Programs and Sales, Leading One Sea Alliance, ONE SEA, referred to Maritime Automation Terminology. Mrs Haikkola clarified that automation/level definitions are referring to the ship and its parts and have nothing to do with manning principles while she clarified that the automation level should refer to ‘level of human attention’ required for safe operation.
Pia Meling, Vice President, Sales & Marketing, Massterly AS, explained how new technologies transform shipping. Autonomy is the means not the target, she said, highlighting as key benefits the following: lower operational cost, improved safety and efficiency, zero/ low emission vessels. Explaining that autonomous does not mean unmanned, she referred to the degree of autonomy.
Marvin Bielek, Nautical Author, Mintra, highlighted that realistic and relevant navigation training is the key to safer shipping since many factors can influence performance of people onboard, such as inattention and poor judgement, stress and fatigue, the complexity of equipment, scheduling pressures, inadequate processes and aids.
Panel #5 Human Factors in the Smart Shipping Era
IACS has recognized the importance of the human element in terms of training for new technologies mariners will be using onboard. The fundamental aspects are usability of systems and the competence of people. Certainly, there needs to be a balance between the two across the whole ship and systems lifecycle. To make the ship usable in terms of safety and efficiency, industry must take a human-centred approach to user needs and involve them in the design of systems.
Speakers of Panel 5: Dmitry Gladkov, General Manager & Sales Director, OneLearn Global; Capt. Soma Sunder Gollakota, Co-Founder, Bigyellowfish; Capt. Konstantinos G. Karavasilis, Senior Loss Prevention Executive, UK P&I Club; Johanna Kull, Loss Prevention Executive, Alandia; Mads Ragnvald Nielsen, Co-Founder & CEO, Scoutbase, mentioned key challenges imposed by smart shipping to the human factor and discussed about new trends to considered for people onboard.
Starting the discussion, experts highlighted that the pandemic raised awareness around the human factor issues. It the brought more tools and engagement between ships and shore. The challenges concerning human factor were not new; the pandemic just brought these into the surface and opened discussion. Now, we need to take the next step and raise awareness by considering how human factor is affected by the smart shipping. A key focus area is their training; nowadays, technology is advancing much and we do not have enough time to train our people to be able to catch up with technology. However, considering that the future ships will be smart, people onboard need to be able to operate complex systems
Other challenges is the shortage of crew members onboard. It has been noticed that the safe manning number onboard is low while the ships are getting bigger in size. What is more, multitasking is needed in order to use the multiple digital tools but seafarers need to have enhanced situational awareness, support decision making and performance. As technology is advancing, older generations may find difficult to cope with updates. In that regard, it is important to give them incentives and make them understand the new technology. Technology understanding and acceptance will not happen if seafarers are not engaged. As such, it is important to join discussions and provide feedback and the industry needs to take into consideration the seafarer community to bridge any gaps. Furthermore, research will help to understand how tehnology is being implemented and is useful for the end users. Furthermore experts discussed about the advantages and disadvantages of greater connectivity onboard, highlighting that connectivity is very important, but challenges arise with regards to cyber security and security in general as there is emotional distraction. In that regard, best practices will help. Nonetheless, if we want to bring more technology on vessels, more connectivity, it is a must and any associated disadvantages can be controlled. Finally, experts mentioned the need to get over the fear of change, focus on soft skills and education and also revisit STCW considering all latest developments.