The FLAGSHIP initiative led by various businesses from all over Europe
FLAGSHIP, the part EU-funded maritime transport project, concluded on 31st May. During its tenure, the project facilitated the research and development of 10 new maritime solutions from multiple European companies.
The FLAGSHIP initiative was divided into sub-projects led by various businesses from all over Europe .For example, FLAGSHIP-TCI led by Marintek in Norway was concerned with creating key performance indicators and technical condition indices to enable fleet managers to compare the performance of their vessels with each other and with benchmarks.
This led to the development of a commercial product by DNV, called Top Monitoring, which monitors main engines.Commercial products monitoring auxiliary engines are expected to be launched later this year from two separate FLAGSHIP partners – Danaos and Wartsila.
In the UK, BMT led a sub-project – FLAGSHIP-HCA – which addressed surveys and drydock repair processes. This resulted in the German partner, Germanischer Lloyd (GL), introducing a new commercial tool called Hull Manager.
GL also led a project called FLAGSHIP-EEM, which focused on energy savings during sailing. This has resulted in a patent being secured to cover a new process of measuring and giving a direct insight in power consumption during operations. Commercial products are also planned for this year.
The FLAGSHIP-Bridge Support project led by SAM Electronics in Germany has improved integrated bridge systems (IBS) with advanced functions for further integration of nautical information. By integrating NAVTEX messages, radar and AIS targets into a single coherent display, it is possible to speed up hazard analysis, improve tracking accuracy and reduce the load on the duty officer.
The NAVTEX (Notices to Mariners) integration is already available commercially from SAM, in NACOS 1100. AIS target merger will be available in NACOS Platinum, coming out this year. The portable conning unit will also be available in 2011 as Tablet PC.
Alarm filtering was addressed by the FLAGSHIP-iCAS sub-project led by Kongsberg in Norway dealing with the problem of large cascades of alarms. The first commercial version came out in May 2009 and later versions are planned. Although this system is well beyond current minimum regulations, the market has responded very positively and several orders have already being taken by Kongsberg.
Norway based Autronica led FLAGSHIP-ISEMS, which dealt with safety condition monitoring, damage and prevention assessment, as well as ship-to-shore communication the results of which are already in the market as Austromaster ISEMS.
A sub-project called FLAGSHIP-DSS led by the University of Strathclyde in the UK dealt with the determination of an Index of Vulnerability.
Its presentation to the crew in a recent seven-week demonstration led to an immediate improvement in practices, which saw the Index fall by 45% in a single week – six orders from a wide variety of interest parties have already been received.
Herman de Meester, FLAGSHIP co-ordinator said: The adoption of specific learning into new products for the advancement of the industry is exactly what EU projects such as FLAGSHIP are all about and are to be welcomed and encouraged. This is another example of the maritime industry working hard to meet and exceed performance standards.
Source: Tanker Operator