E-navigation: charting the route to autonomous vessels

Autonomous vessels are set to be a reality in the future, but work on them is well underway in the present. Here Willy Zeiler, NAVTOR Marketing and Communication Manager, outlines how e-Navigation will help turn an ambitious concept into reality.

Revolution underway on the bridge

Mark Bull, Trafalgar Navigation, says that the provision of ECDIS on board today’s merchant ships is causing a ‘revolution’ in the way they are navigated. Like all revolutions, issues that were never considered crop up, and ECDIS is no exception. Above all, he notes, an ECDIS mindset is required.

ECDIS use in the modern era

Yannis Papaefthimiou, Managing Director, FURUNO gave a presentation on the ‘’ECDIS use in the modern era’’ during the 2016 SMART4SEA Forum. He noted that ECDIS is a milestone marking the industry’s transition from paper to digital navigation; 58% of the world’s fleet is now using ECDIS showing that the industry is on track for adoption in the end of the decade. Large vessels & tanker operators have successfully faced ECDIS adoption challenges that now cargo ship operators are finding on their doorstep. He advised that for setting the right phase-in policy and fully understanding the extent for management of change, there is need for teamwork between ship operators and ECDIS makers.

ECDIS: Transition from paper to digital

Panagiota P. Chrysanthi, DPA & QSE Manager, Andriaki Shipping presented ‘’lessons learned from the ECDIS transition from paper to digital’’ during the 2016 SMART4SEA Forum. She advised that the industry can benefit from the advantages of the electronic navigation and control the safety risks with a smooth and methodical transition considering in the process the following key issues: Evolution, Consistency, Diligence, Integration and Safety.

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