NAVTOR is continuing its mission to make life easier, safer and more compliant for navigators and shipping companies with a breakthrough revamp of its acclaimed Passage Planning module.
Featured in the latest release of NAVTOR’s NavStation planning software (version 6.3), the new module offers expanded automation and auto-calculations, slashing both administration time and the potential for human errors, compliance with the very latest industry standards, enhanced data utilisation, the ability to revise and update plans (rather than creating new ones after voyage deviations/changes), and an all-new dashboard for easy insights.
Timo Essers, e-Navigation Director, NAVTOR, says the innovations have been driven by the company’s “commitment to understanding and addressing the pain points of today’s evolving maritime industry.”
He explains: “Passage Plans are vital documents that come under close scrutiny from state controls and global authorities. But, as any navigator knows, they are also time-consuming and, in an atmosphere of ever-increasing responsibility and regulation, a real burden in terms of administrative workload. Our software module has addressed this issue over the past few years, but after close collaboration with the industry we’ve now taken that to the next level with a new batch of digital innovations. We see this as smart shipping in action.”
One of the software’s key benefits is the automation of processes, with data instantly gathered from NAVTOR’s e-Navigation ‘digital ecosystem’ to populate necessary data fields. The new version brings in a raft of fresh data – from tidal information to time zones, ENCs, load lines, and port databases – utilising relevant points for auto-calculations, including enhanced under keel clearance and overhead clearance calculations, with considerations for minimum draughts, trims and CATZOC, amongst other factors. The very latest regulations and guidelines, including those from OCIMF and Intertanko, are integrated into the constantly updated solution.
Value driven innovation
In an example of how the maritime technology company collaborates with the industry, Essers mentions the newly “live” status of plans.
“Some of our customers made us aware of how inconvenient it was to make new plans if there were deviations from the original passage plans, for example, if weather enforced changes, or if port congestion impacted upon sailing schedules. So, in version 6.3 users can now simply revise and update approved passage plans in real-time, rather than starting from scratch. This is indicative of the way we develop our solutions – paying close attention to the ‘wish lists’ of customers and then finding ways to meet those needs. We progress through partnership.”
Further benefits of the Passage Planning module include flexible print options, vessel particular improvements and general optimisation. The new dashboard allows for rapid snapshots of operations according to plans, with overviews of factors such as average speed, sensor information, weather graphs, wave and wind warnings, etc.
In addition to this module, further refinements have been made to NavStation’s e-Publication Reader (with new filtering functionality), Manoeuvring Assistant (now featuring added precision, such as speed in cm/second) and the overall technological interface.
The voyage continues
Essers, who has just been promoted to his new role after four and a half years at the Norwegian-headquartered business, sees further innovation on the horizon at NAVTOR.
“We’re very proud of this latest offering, but there’s much more to come. We’ll continue using data as a foundation to build new solutions to enhance situational awareness, reduce the workload of navigators and help drive maritime forwards to a more sustainable future. NavStation 6.3 is an important step on that pathway.”
The release of NavStation 6.3 coincides with the merger of NAVTOR and Voyager Worldwide to create the undisputed global leader in maritime technology solutions. The combined operation now delivers products and solutions to around 18,000 vessels in the world fleet.