NAVTOR, a global leader in advanced e-Navigation services, has partnered with Japan’s “K” Line RoRo Bulk Ship Management Co. Ltd (KRBS), the “K”LINE Group, to develop a digital manoeuvring assistant, enabling safer, more accurate and optimally efficient vessel operations. Now the new Manoeuvring Assistant module will be available on NAVTOR’s digital planning tool NavStation (from version 5.2).
KRBS, which manages a fleet of 140 advanced PCC and Bulk carriers, has worked alongside Norwegian-headquartered NAVTOR since 2016, utilizing the firm’s innovative ENC-based services and technology. KRBS approached NAVTOR to develop a new bridge-based tool to help operators easily access the necessary information for large-scale ship management, while also clarifying safe and optimal manoeuvring and berthing operations.
Simple, safe, seamless
“We have an excellent working relationship with KRBS, which appreciates our mission to make ship management tasks simpler, more efficient and safer through the delivery of innovative e-Navigation technology,” comments Hiroaki Kitano, Managing Director at NAVTOR Japan.
“The firm manages a sizable fleet, with many vessel types, sizes and sailing patterns and needed a practical solution that could be rolled out easily, without the need to install standalone equipment. Working with our ENC delivery as the foundation, we have collaborated to create a user-friendly solution that can be distributed seamlessly as a simple piece of existing software – this will greatly benefit our customers, both here in Japan and right across the globe.”
Tailored to deliver
Manoeuvring Assistant synchronizes routes with NavStation, and by combining sensor data and AIS targets with updated ENCs, the bridge-team are provided with most necessary information in one portable module.
When a route can be monitored on ENCs, sensor and AIS data can be received over Wi-Fi allowing a tablet PCs to be used as portable tools to enable safe manoeuvring (e.g. allowing officers to stand at the bridge wing for full situational awareness).
Manoeuvring Assistant allows the bridge team to assess risk empowered by real time information, enhancing predictability and safe, optimal maneuvering in heavy traffic and berthing operations.
“We trust NAVTOR for the team’s quality services and innovative approach to problem solving,” states Captain Tomoyuki Murata, Managing Executive Officer at KRBS.
“I think it is important for navigational officers and Captains to make instant judgments based on correct and updated information - information such as the vessel state and the surround situation – to achieve optimal safety operation. We endeavor to provide our stakeholders with the highest quality services to ensure the best safety operation. Especially on critical moment, such as proceeding congested areas, berthing/un-berthing operation, special supporting tool should be required.
NAVTOR has demonstrated that they are the ideal development partner to fulfill our practical requirement.”
Added value services
Manoeuvring Assistant is just one new module amongst a diverse menu of value-adding applications available on NavStation. The chart table, which seamlessly updates all charts and operationally relevant data through the DNV GL cyber secure NavBox ‘gateway’, provides a range of services. This includes offering various options like navigational and security alerts, geo-referenced regulatory information (covering everything from the IMO down to individual port authorities) and passage planning.
The ability of NavStation and NavBox to connect with shore-based teams provides an invaluable link for enabling smarter shipping, cutting emissions, improving fleet management and reducing overall fleet operational expenses.
Leading the way
NAVTOR has established itself is a world leader in e-Navigation since launching in 2011, providing innovative e-Navigation solutions, and as a total supplier of navigational products and services for the maritime sector. The company strives to make life easier for navigators, and safer, clearer and more efficient for shipowners, ship managers and operators.
In 2012 the firm released the first type approved Pay As You Sail ENC service, following in 2014 with the launch of NavStation, the world’s first digital planning tool. The company has grown quickly and established a network of subsidiaries and distributors worldwide, spanning Norway, Singapore, Japan, Sweden, Russia, the US, and the UK.