Page 1

2017 • A supplement to Marine Electronics & Communications

The complete guide to

“Navigators might not identify key potential navigation hazards during passage planning, which would put the ship at risk” George Devereese, loss prevention advisor, UK P&I Club, see page 9

2017 Regulars

contents The complete guide to

2 Introduction 5 Forward Thinking

Regulations & Standards

Published April 2017

6 Shipowners, operators and manufacturers have until September to upgrade ecdis to the latest IHO requirements 7 New IHO and IEC standards explained

Editor: Martyn Wingrove t: +44 20 8370 1736 e:

Safety 9 Shortages in crew navigation skills cause ship accidents, says UK P&I Club

Voyage planning 10 Advances in display technology have paved the way for development of new passage planning stations that navigators can use for weather routeing 11 P&O Ferries goes paperless for ship navigation

Training 13 Training is essential to improve crew competence and ensuring safety when using e-navigation equipment 14 Ecdis training should include the teaching of traditional navigation methods

Systems & ENCs 16 Faster satellite communications and connected ships are transforming ecdis into navigation decision support systems 17 Definitions of e-navigation and connected ships 18 Partnerships and acquisitions in e-navigation 19 Suppliers refocus their strategies to align with the new technologies 20 Transas partners with Satcom Global for connected e-navigation 23 Designing new ecdis models with user feedback 24 Shipping saves US$185 million a year through weather routeing

E-navigation 26 Increasing functionality of ecdis is promising for safer and more efficient navigation, but greater harmonisation is needed 27 Port collaboration and decision making group established

Sales Manager: Paul Dowling t: +44 20 8370 7014 e: Sales: Jo Lewis t: +44 20 8370 7793 e: Head of Sales – Asia: Kym Tan t: +65 9456 3165 e: Group Production Manager: Mark Lukmanji t: +44 20 8370 7019 e: Subscriptions: Sally Church t: +44 20 8370 7018 e: Chairman: John Labdon Managing Director: Steve Labdon Finance Director: Cathy Labdon Operations Director: Graham Harman Executive Editor: Paul Gunton Head of Production: Hamish Dickie Business Development Manager: Steve Edwards Published by: Riviera Maritime Media Ltd Mitre House 66 Abbey Road Enfield EN1 2QN UK ISSN 2055-5180 (Print) ©2017 Riviera Maritime Media Ltd

Last word 28 What are the challenges for navigating drone ships?

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The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017




Martyn Wingrove, Editor


The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017

elcome to this year’s edition of Marine Electronics & Communications’ supplement The Complete Guide to Ecdis, which outlines how far we have advanced down the e-navigation route. While global e-navigation is still some way off, we are well into IMO’s lengthy implementation of the mandatory carriage rules for ecdis, with the majority of passenger ships already well versed in using these instruments. Many tanker operators have been installing ecdis and using electronic navigational charts (ENCs) for a few years now, and an increasing number of dry cargo ships are using them, too. From 1 July 2016, all container ships and bulk carriers of more than 50,000gt have to be fitted with ecdis no later than their first survey on or after that date. From 1 July this year it is the turn of dry cargo ships of between 20,000gt and 50,000gt. Owners of dry cargo ships of 10,000gt and upwards but less than 20,000gt have another year. This means that the majority of commercial ships of over 10,000gt will be fitted with ecdis by the end of next year. This should be the time for IMO to begin implementing a global e-navigation service that is based on the technologies developed in the regional testbeds. However, realistically we are probably a number of years away from getting to that stage. If we do get to that point, then ecdis will be the intelligence that is behind e-navigation, according to Transas chief executive Frank Coles. He thinks that ship traffic control and e-navigation will become critical to ensure efficient and safe operations in the maritime segment of the shipping market (see page 5). This is all part of the digitalisation of shipping, while providing more vessel traffic co-ordination and better decision support infrastructure. I am certain that a global e-navigation system will eventually be developed, but there are many hurdles to overcome, such as more standardisation of ecdis, investment in shorebased ship traffic control infrastructure and commitment from flag and port states. It may come in steps, such as multinational followed by

multi-regional, or it may be a diluted version, but we will surely get there. However, for the present, manufacturers, suppliers and shipowners have to tackle the challenge of updating ecdis to new International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) and International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) standards by 1 September. There is not long before port state control can enforce these standards, which means ships that do not have updated ecdis with the latest ENCs and crew familiar with these could face detention. A summary of the updated standards is outlined inside this edition (see page 6). Seafarer training is a vital aspect of ecdis requirements, but it can be overlooked unless it is a key aspect of a deployment campaign. UK P&I Club loss prevention advisor George Devereese warns the industry that ships could be at risk if officers of the watch are not trained sufficiently in the use of ecdis and do not have the key navigation knowledge to continue safely if the instruments fail (see page 9). Training expert Christian Hempstead agrees that training should include traditional navigation skills in case there is an ecdis failure. He says that typespecific training is most effective when done on simulators (see page 14). Advances in display technology have led to a new generation of electronic voyage planning stations on ships. We are now seeing 46in and 55in touchscreens that can be used with ENCs for passage planning. Navigators can overlay all types of information, including weather and efficient routeing on these back-bridge displays (see page 10). The delivery of all this information to ecdis back or front of the bridge is increasingly important in the connected ship age. In this edition, Michael Herson of UK-based consultancy The Strategy Works outlines the results of his research into how ecdis can be connected to shore. He notes that advances in data communications stimulate the development of ways for shore-based organisations to analyse onboard operations and optimise vessel performance. All this leads to different levels of e-navigation, with ecdis at the centre of these developments. ECDIS



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E-NAVIGATION AND E-COMMERCE WILL TRANSFORM SHIPPING In the latest of our forward thinking series, Transas chief executive Frank Coles explains why shipping faces a perfect storm of technology that is forever changing


hipping is facing a perfect storm of new technology, e-commerce and e-navigation that will transform the industry. Transas chief executive Frank Coles says that new models of shipping business will be developed as smart shipping technologies are adopted. He also expects more developments in e-navigation and ship traffic control systems. “The perfect storm is the one confronting the maritime industry,” said Mr Coles. “It is one which will disrupt all elements of the shipping industry. It is technology-driven and in some cases is also self-inflicted.” He explained that new players in the shipping industry are using e-commerce to disrupt the sector, while digitisation of shipping is changing the way the industry operates. “Clearly the line between the logistics, e-commerce companies and the shipper is beginning to blur.” Mr Coles added: “Digitalisation leads to commoditisation and disruption. The ripples of this change might be felt across today’s ecosystem.” He included in that ecosystem the insurance market, the charter market, cargo booking, port operations, ship design, logistics, navigation, communications, shipyards, and owning and managing ships. “The changing model of shipping cargo and logistics will change the shipowning and operating model, and that will create the smart maritime operations, which also need scale in order to be more efficient.” Transas has reacted to these changes by developing the Transas Harmonised Eco System of Integrated Solutions (Thesis). This is a platform with shared

data services, decision support tools and applications to enable the digital maritime industry to operate. “In this respect we see the navigation sensors, along with ecdis, as the brain that is employed both to operate and to monitor the ship's operation,” said Mr Coles. He added: “Ship traffic control and e-navigation will become critical to ensure efficient and safe operations in the maritime segment of the shipping market.” Whether there are manned ships or automated ships, smart ships and smart operations, there will be increased digitalisation, improvements in decision support, better monitoring and a scaling up of shipmanagement operations. “Just like the e-commerce giants the drivers will be on-time delivery, efficiency and cost savings.” Mr Coles said the development of data analytics and service centres has been too fragmented for shipping to gain all of the benefits. “I think there will be an emerging requirement for larger shared service centres in shipmanagement operations. If we are to create a safe environment, one that reduces accidents and incidents and manages manned or unmanned ships, we need a global monitoring service.” He would like to see the development of ship traffic control as an overarching role, monitoring vessel activity for the safety, security and efficiency of the ecosystem. “We also have to consider the human dimension, both the crew on board and those working ashore,” he added. For this, the company has made progress with its Transas Academy to offer training, competence skills and support for the industry's human factor requirements.

On the bridge, Mr Coles expects that business will be about more than simply supplying an ecdis. “We have shifted to supplying the decision support infrastructure tools to enable the smart operations of the maritime section of the shipping industry.” He expects shipowners, vendors, equipment suppliers, service providers, agents and repair companies to face major challenges in the digital environment. “The largely untouched maritime segment of the supply chain is now changing, and that change is going to accelerate as more innovative players come in and challenge the status quo.” He concluded: “The perfect storm is developing as the e-commerce players encroach, while technology impacts the way of doing business and the middle man is removed by the digitalisation, creating commodity driven efficiency and a new world for maritime. Smart operations is the result not the reason.” ECDIS

Frank Coles: “Ship traffic control and e-navigation will become critical to ensure efficient and safe operations”

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017




hipowners and manufacturers have until the end of August this year to upgrade ecdis to ensure it meets improved standards from the International Hydrographic Organization (IHO). Many suppliers have gained typeapproval for their latest ecdis versions to demonstrate they meet the updated standards. These approvals also validate that ecdis is updated to the latest standards from the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). Manufacturers are working towards being ready for the latest editions of IHO standards S-52, S-57, S-63 and S-64. But it is down to ship operators to do so, too. Some will just need to deploy the updated software, but others will need to replace equipment. Failure to comply with the standards could mean ship detentions if port state control inspectors discover that ecdis does not meet the requirements. This is because it would become a question of noncompliance with Solas regulations. The IHO updates were needed to address a number of ecdis anomalies and safety critical issues that had been identified by users and accident investigators. It had been found that improper use could be caused by either operator limitations or technical limitations affecting the presentation of electronic navigational chart (ENC) data in ecdis. To address these, IEC and IHO worked together to publish new standards in August 2015. These apply to new ecdis systems now. Existing systems need to be updated by 1 September 2017. Ecdis systems need to meet edition 4.0 of IEC 61174, as well as the latest editions of IHO standards S-52, S-57, S-63 and S-64. The IEC updates reduce the number of audible alerts on ship bridges, bring consistency to the use of symbols and abbreviations, standardise ecdis default control settings and introduce route exchange format RTZ. IHO’s latest standards address: • A new design of chart object functionality in the Pick report that makes access to ENC chart information easier and more understandable for users.

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017

• The reorganisation of alert management resulting in fewer alarms being generated by ENC objects. • A standardised way of making ENC update status reports that allow mariners and port state control inspectors to confirm that the ENCs installed in an ecdis are up-to-date. • An ecdis viewing groups extension, based on mariner feedback, for detailed control of ENC features. • Chart management and ENC status reports. • ENC test data sets. There are also other modifications, such as the addition of new symbols, the names of fairways and anchorage areas, date dependent objects and new chart display layers. The main changes to alarms mean that crossing navigational hazards, such as isolated dangers and aids to navigation as well as areas with special conditions and anchorage areas, will generate only visible alarms. However, safety contours will continue to create audible and visible alarms. All ships with ecdis need to have systems that meet these standards as IHO will withdraw edition 6.0 of standard S-52, edition 3.4 of the Presentation Library and edition 2.0 of S-64 from 31 August. After this date, there will only be the latest edition of IHO standards for Solas Chapter V Regulation 27 compliance. Transas was one of the first to gain type approval for its NaviSailor 4000 Ecdis series. It used feedback from mariners to develop a new generation of ecdis that would be fully compliant with the latest IHO and IEC standards. It also included several product improvements, such as the addition of clearing bearings and anchor planning and an improved user maps tool. This new generation of ecdis and chart radar has been available since February 2016. Transas also started an upgrading programme to deliver a cost effective upgrade to systems that were already installed. For systems delivered before 2009, ecdis processors and software need to be replaced. But other components, such as the keyboard, the display and other

accessories and cables, can remain as they are. PC Maritime gained DNV GL approval for its Navmaster Ecdis after it passed all the tests in February this year. This proved that Navmaster was up-to-date and met all the updated IEC and IHO standards. PC Maritime said the updated standards meant that ecdis required interfaces with voyage data recorders, Navtex equipment, bridge navigational watch alarm systems and bridge alert managers. Navmaster Ecdis, along with other ecdis makes, has a function that enables navigators to verify a route against chart hazards. They can also verify turn radius values, which should be carried out before a route can be used for position monitoring. RH Marine gained official certification for its new ecdis that has been available with the Rhodium Bridge system since January. The Dutch company demonstrated that its electronic navigation systems comply with the updated standards. It said that one of the main benefits of upgrading these systems will be a reduction in the number of audible alarms triggered by ecdis. This should ease the problem of alarm fatigue on the bridge, while still maintaining safety at sea, said RH Marine. It worked with Bureau Veritas to improve ecdis with a new settings menu for intuitive operation. RH Marine’s ecdis has user profiles and settings that can be optimised by user or by operations or by sailing area. It has route prediction to see the effect of the ship’s rate of turn on the route and an option to display temporary dangers that may apply in the future. Adveto Advanced Technology is introducing a new ecdis platform that advances its existing electronic navigation systems. Adveto is testing new Ecdis G8 products that will co-exist with its current Ecdis-4000 range, and is working with DNV GL to achieve type-approval for Ecdis G8. Adveto said that G8 will be equipped with the same controls and presentation as its current ecdis equipment and will be compatible with existing hardware, such as keyboards,

control units, electronic signatures and system configurations. However, it will be available as a new product range with three versions, including a base unit, standard version and an extended system. Danelec Marine received a type-approval certificate with an EU wheel mark for its DM700 and DM800 G2 Ecdis models in January. It said that free upgrades will be available for legacy DM800 Ecdis products, which could involve replacing the older hardware. For existing DM800 G2 installations, improvements would require software upgrades that could be installed by the ship’s crew. In 2016, Danelec introduced advanced protection technology software for the rapid and inexpensive shipboard servicing of ecdis.

IHO and IEC latest standards for ecdis Ecdis and electronic navigational charts (ENCs) need to comply with the latest International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) standards from 1 September 2017. These include: • IHO specifications for chart content and display aspects of ecdis – S-52 edition 6.1 introduced in October 2014 • Presentation library – S-52 Annex A, edition 4.0 from October 2014 • Test data sets for ecdis – S-64 edition 3.0 from December 2014 • Data protection scheme – S-63 edition 1.2 from January 2015 The latest International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) standard, IEC 61174 edition 4.0, covers operational and performance requirements, methods of testing and the test results that are required. The IEC 62288 edition 2.0 standard incorporates the presentation of navigation-related information on shipborne navigational displays, covering the general requirements, methods of testing and required test results. ECDIS TOP IMAGE: RH Marine gained official ecdis certification for its Rhodium bridge system

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017

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Shortages in crew navigation skills cause ship accidents


he risks of ecdis error and shortages in navigation knowledge have been highlighted by the UK P&I Club in a report. The marine insurance group said in January this year that ships could be at risk if officers of the watch were not trained sufficiently in the use of ecdis and in what to do if this key navigation aid fails. Despite this guidance, and guidelines issued in the past, ship groundings and collisions are still happening regularly, demonstrating that the navigation risks remain and that crew are not trained sufficiently in electronic navigation systems. The guidance from the UK P&I Club came just before the UK’s Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) published a report on a ferry and car carrier collision. The MAIB investigated the collision of DFDS’s roro ferry Primula Seaways with the outbound City of Rotterdam car carrier on the Humber estuary in eastern England. Investigators concluded that a pilot on the Fairmont Shipping (Canada)-managed car carrier became disorientated and lost awareness of the situation despite there being an electronic chart system and radar. This led to City of Rotterdam striking Primula Seaways, causing considerable damage to both ships. The accident occurred in December 2015. Five months later another DFDS vessel, Petunia Seaways, was involved in another accident in the Humber estuary, sinking historic motor launch Peggotty in dense fog. Although the motor launch did not have sufficient lighting, it was visible on the roro ferry’s radar, but was not acquired nor plotted as a target. The MAIB said in a report that the planning by Peggotty’s master for monitoring the passage was insufficient and relied on an untested method. The intended voyage was not reviewed or reassessed despite the dense fog.

The MAIB also said that the master of Petunia Seaways had not slowed the ship’s speed because of poor weather nor verified S-band radar with X-band, which would have proven the motor launch as an obstruction. Although neither report sees ecdis as a contributory factor, the reports do highlight how human error during passage planning and estuary voyages can lead to serious maritime accidents.

George Devereese emphasised the need for better passage planning and updating ENCs on ecdis

The loss of situational awareness was highlighted by the UK P&I Club. Its loss prevention advisor George Devereese emphasised the need for better passage planning and updating electronic navigational charts on ecdis. He also highlighted the importance of adequate training on ecdis and in navigation. Mr Devereese stressed the need for seafarer assessments and training renewal on ecdis and other bridge equipment, as software and operating functions can change over time. He underlined the risk from setting too many alarms that can overload seafarers during voyages. He also suggested that alerts should be minimised during daily operations, but, "stringent alarm settings should be maintained for passage planning, which should prevent navigation problems from emerging during a voyage". He also highlighted the risks of misuse of chart ranging and scales. This is because, "officers can misunderstand the ranging of the charts, by zooming too far in or out". Mr Devereese added: "Navigators may not identify key potential navigation hazards during passage planning or during the voyage, which would put the ship at risk." This was one of the contributing factors in the grounding of product tanker Ovit on the Varne Bank in the English Channel in September 2013. Ovit’s primary means of navigation was an ecdis. In a report, the MAIB highlighted that the passage plan was unsafe as it passed directly over the Varne Bank. It had been prepared in ecdis by an inexperienced and unsupervised junior officer, and was not checked by the master before departure. The officer of the watch followed the track shown on ecdis, but the safety settings were not appropriate to the local conditions and the audible alarm was disabled. Furthermore, he was using the wrong electronic navigational chart scale for the passage through the Channel. ECDIS

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017




Hatteland released a new 4k resolution, 32in Series X multivision display

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017

dvances in display technology have led to a new generation of electronic voyage planning stations on ships. These developments have come at the right time, as shipping transfers from preparing routes on paper charts to electronic passage planning. While ecdis at the front of the bridge should be kept uncluttered and used primarily for voyage monitoring, there should be no limit to the information that is displayed on the planning station at the back of the bridge. The navigation station should have the latest electronic navigational charts (ENCs) installed at different ranges and scales. It should also have weather, sea-state, environmental and hazard information pertaining to any planned voyage. Other information, such as port conditions and date-dependent data, plus services including weather routeing and route optimisation, can be installed on the planning station. All this should be integrated into a single display for preparing safe voyages that can be used by the bridge team. The displays should have touchscreen control and split-screen options for route planning and checking against known hazards. There should also be a simple process for

transferring verified and approved routes to ecdis at the front of the bridge. These stations will become more important as the industry moves further towards instigating e-navigation concepts. Hatteland Display recently received type-approval for its new 55in voyage planning station for ship bridges. This verified that the ultra high definition chart and planning table has the requisite clarity and colour range for safe navigation and use with integrated bridge systems. Hatteland president and chief executive Trond Johannessen said the product incorporates a large 4K resolution multivision display and touchscreen flat panel technology. He said the 55in station enables integrated bridge system and navigation technology manufacturers to combine multiple data from different ship systems into a single display. The 4K resolution ensures that multiple data types can be easily viewed under all conditions. Mr Johannessen added: “The 55in ultra high definition chart and planning table is designed to become the central focus on the bridge of the future as it has the capability to clearly display multiple data in one place. This is a growing requirement as vessel operations become more complex and data-centric.�


He continued: “Typeapproval testing of our flagship display system enables manufacturers to meet the needs of their customers by designing smart shipping solutions that deliver gains in safety and operational efficiency, by leveraging the most innovative technologies, data integration and display methods.” The display uses thin-film transistor technology with an active-matrix liquid crystal panel and light emitting diode backlighting. It has a resolution of 3,840 by 2,160, a contrast ratio of 4,000:1 and a 6.5 millisecond response time. The digital chart table is tested to the International Electrotechnical Commission’s IEC 60945 standard and typeapproved for use in marine conditions for ecdis and e-navigation. The brightness, contrast and reliability were tested for displaying ENCs. In addition to the 55in display, there is a mechanical pod that houses a Hatteland HTC02 computer. The floor stand model, for chart table configurations, has lift and tilt mechanisms. The display can also be integrated into a bridge console or mounted on a wall.

Hatteland unveiled a 32in ultra high definition display for radar and ecdis as part of its Series X MVD range. This offers viewing clarity in all light conditions, is calibrated for ecdis and can display multiapplication data on a single screen instead of on multiple monitors, which means it can be used for voyage planning. Marine Technologies (MT) is using a 55in Hatteland Display monitor for its latest chart table concept. This uses Navtor software and its ENC kernel for voyage planning applications, said MT Norway general manager Sveinung Tollefsen. “The 55in chart table is good for route planning and can be a standard platform for other applications,” he said. “It runs other applications such as weather overlays and trend reviewing.” Navigation data can be displayed from Raytheon Anschütz radar and ecdis. Eizo Corp has been developing a 46in multitouch desktop monitor for voyage planning. Eizo global maritime product manager Rob Hawksworth explained that the technology will be ready for testing this year. “The 46in multi-touch desktop has

P&O FERRIES GOES PAPERLESS FOR SHIP NAVIGATION P&O Ferries has started using Global Navigation Solutions’ (GNS’s) Voyager software on all its ships for managing its transfer towards paperless navigation. GNS will supply digital and paperless navigational products to 15 vessels during the transition. The latest edition of the software is Voyager 7, which interfaces with electronic navigational chart (ENC) suppliers and other information providers. Voyager 7 detects potential navigation compliance problems and downloads chart and publication updates directly to vessels. Navigators can access weather information from Meteo Group, BVS and weather routeing from StormGeo and A2BviaC distance tables for route planning and optimising fuel use. GNS’s software is used by Hamburg Süd on its container ships, by NYK LNG Shipmanagement on gas carriers and by ER Schiffahrt on almost 100 of its ships.

Alphatron's AlphaChartTable has a split screen mode on a 46in display

an anti-glare, anti-fingerprint top coat, and is good for night operations as it goes down to just one candela,” he said. “It has palm rejection – so it does not count the palm as a touch – and a wide bezel so that the navigator can put things down on the surface without covering the image. It is ecdis compliant and can be used for radar and conning.” The desktop monitor has a resolution of 1,920 by 1,080, and can be tilted and height-adjusted. Mr Hawksworth also presented Eizo’s ultra-wide monitors for displays. These are 48in and 36in concepts that could be introduced in 2017 if customer feedback is positive. Eizo supplied 42in displays for JRC and Alphatron Marine’s AlphaBridge systems. It also supplies the 46in display for the AlphaChartTable. This is an electronically-tilted display that navigators can use for voyage planning. It has a built in Navtex and GPS navigator and software interfaces. Navtor supplies e-navigation software and hardware, such as the NavStick USB device for downloading ENCs to ecdis. It has developed the NavSync and NavTracker applications that enable navigators and

shipowners to manage chart usage, chart update history and vessel tracks. Its NavBox application automatically downloads navigational data when connected to ecdis. For voyage planning, Navtor developed the NavStation that combines a 46in touchscreen with the planning software and weather information. It includes access to digital e-navigation information, such as the United Kingdom Hydrographic Office’s Admiralty Digital Publications (ADP), that is integrated as an overlay on top of the official ENC charts. Voyage planning can also involve weather routeing with information from specialised providers. Navtor offers an integrated weather and routeing functionality using StormGeo’s Bon Voyage System (BVS). It enables voyage optimisation using weather and ocean information. Navigators can calculate the least time, least fuel or least cost using BVS. This uses algorithms to produce speed and fuel consumption curves and cost and time estimates, and to generate enhanced maps and graphics for displaying optimal routes. It can show weather induced constraints and no-go zones. ECDIS

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017

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Training is essential for e-navigation E

cdis training is essential for improving crew competence and ensuring the safe navigation of ships with these devices. It is also a mandatory requirement that bridge teams are familiar with operating ecdis on board their vessels. To meet the needs of shipowners, there are generic ecdis courses that follow the IMO model course 1.27 and type-specific courses that familiarise crew in ecdis operation. Generic and type-specific training can be conducted in academies or using online courses, in which Safebridge has become a leading provider. It has joined forces with Videotel and Seagull in separate deals to deliver online ecdis familiarisation training to ship operators. Some argue that training in academies using the knowledge of experienced trainers is a better way of ensuring that crew are familiar with ecdis operations and able to cope in difficult scenarios, such as when the positioning signal is tampered with. Modal Training is the latest independent centre to open for maritime training in Europe. The centre opened in Immingham, UK in February this year for a range of maritime and offshore courses, including ecdis generic and type-specific training. Sam Whitaker, director of Modal Training and vice principal of strategic projects at Grimsby Institute, said that ecdis training in academies provides seafarers with navigation practice in various situations. “Trainers can put trainees in difficult situations by switching off the GPS feed. Obstacles and difficulties can be introduced to test individual responses in a safe and controlled environment,” he said. “We have six ecdis-chart radar workstations in one room, run on Kongsberg’s K-Sim navigation simulation. We can provide generic and type-specific courses. Kongsberg is the first, but we expect more will come,” he added. Mr Whitaker explained that these desktop kits simulate a wide range of scenarios and traffic levels to help support mariners in learning the latest route

planning and voyage monitoring techniques. They broaden seafarer knowledge about vessel movements in different conditions, in plotting safe routes, validating routes and keeping ships on track. Seafarer ecdis training should not stop when the type-specific courses have been completed. Mariners are expected to maintain their familiarisation with onboard ecdis throughout their careers, which means regular training when systems and software are updated. Port state control inspectors are increasingly expected to verify bridge officer competence on ecdis. UK-based training group Ecdis Ltd has responded to these requirements by introducing annual competency assurance training (ACAT) courses for ships with and without internet access. These courses assure vessel owners that crew are competent in using onboard ecdis equipment, which improves navigation safety and meets regulatory requirements. The offline versions are the same as the online ACAT courses, except they can be purchased and downloaded onshore, or when internet access is available. They can then be run on any computer for up to one year for competency assurance purposes. The courses are available with two different licence options. There is a single licence for individual seafarers, and an option for shipowners to cover the

complete competence training requirement on the vessel for a year. This enables companies to register an entire ship with an unlimited number of crew members. Tanker and gas carrier operator Consolidated Marine Management (CMM) and passenger shipping company Condor Ferries have both started using ACAT courses for crews. CMM uses ACAT training for ecdis models supplied by Japan Radio Co and Furuno Electric on 23 ships. It operates a fleet of 12 product and chemical tankers, three oil tankers and eight very large gas carriers. Condor Ferries, which operates passenger ships between the UK, France and the Channel Islands, has agreed to use Ecdis Ltd to offer competence assurance training to crew that use ecdis supplied by Transas. Latvian company LSC Shipmanagement also offers ACAT courses to crew. Its head of fleet personnel Sanita Zurzdina said that ACAT courses for specific ecdis models have been beneficial to the company. She added: “From my perspective, the courses have given us great insight into our crews’ competence and have given us peace of mind that they fully understand how to use the equipment. We have already found our crew members are being reminded of the functions on their ecdis systems that they needed refreshing on.” ECDIS

Modal Training has installed a suite of Kongsberg's ecdis desktop simulators

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017


Ecdis training should include

traditional navigation


cdis training should not just be about teaching cadets how to use the instruments. It should also involve traditional navigation skills and awareness of maritime situations, said training expert Christian Hempstead. The owner of Hempstead Maritime Training said his cadets are taught to be aware of situations outside the window of the bridge as much as how to use the technology. This is because ecdis should be viewed as an aid to navigation that could be fallible and incorrect. He also thinks cadets should be taught about all of the different methods of securing an accurate position for the vessel on electronic navigational charts. Mr Hempstead said training should provide seafarers with the knowledge to ask the instruments the right questions. “We teach traditional navigation, so that they are able to ask how they can get those answers,” he added. “It should not just be about teaching ecdis, as crew should not wholly rely on ecdis. They need to look out of the window and this can be a problem if it is not practised." Practical training also allows cadets to consider the amount of time it takes to consult the bridge equipment, and the consequences this will have for what is happening elsewhere. “It takes time to look at ecdis and radar, and this reduces the time available for situational awareness,” Mr Hempstead said. He added: “They can get an understanding of this through simulation training." He approved of the way in which the Center for Simulator and Maritime Training Academy (CSmart) deals with ecdis training. CSmart provides training for the whole of the Carnival Corp fleet of cruise ships. Carnival invested in a suite of Transas simulators for the Arison Maritime Center in Almere, the Netherlands. This resource provides a very large number of different courses, including bridge resource management and navigation.

CSmart provides ecdis training in two stages, separating it into two modules. The first module covers operation of the instruments and the other covers the management of ecdis and electronic navigational charts (ENCs) on integrated bridges. Mr Hempstead suggested that this would not be possible if only the IMO guidelines were followed, which provide for just 40 hours of ecdis training. He said seafarers need more practical experience and continuous familiarisation as equipment is upgraded. UK P&I Club loss prevention advisor George Devereese agreed that traditional navigation should remain a core element of seafarer courses. “The technology can be fallible and crew can be surprised when there is a fault,” he explained. “Seafarers still need to look out of the window for situational awareness and use the instruments as an aid to navigation.” He said that seafarers need to be taught how to sift through data, so they do not become swamped with information. Anglo Eastern Univan Group’s Pradeep Chawla said shipowners should be training seafarers now to use the future technology. He is managing director for quality, health, safety, the environment and training at the shipmanagement group. Capt Chawla said that more widespread adoption of IT in shipping will help the shipping sector to attract a new generation of hightech seafarers. “I expect there will be a quantum leap in the next 10 years in the technology that goes into ships,” he said at the Transas global conference in St Julian's, Malta. “We will need to train people now, for 10 years from now.” He wants IMO to update the international convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping to respond to rapid technology changes. Capt Chawla said that he believed that IMO has the ability to react to different technologies by publishing updates to its conventions. However, he agreed that there was still a place for traditional navigation training. ECDIS

Ship operation and training experts discuss what is needed in ecdis training

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017

European Maritime Cyber Risk Management Summit 20 June 2017, London


Maritime Cyber Security: People, Processes and Products

The new ECDIS NX has been designed from the scratch under continuous user participation and user workshops, making it the world’s first user-defined ECDIS.

The Maritime Cyber Risk Management Summit is a one day event that addresses cyber security management in the maritime industry from operational, technical, training, insurance, regulatory and legal standpoints.

Thanks to an unparalleled intuitiveness, ECDIS NX effectively supports users and contributes to safe ECDIS operation and navigation.

What will you learn?

• Clear user interface

• New and emerging maritime cyber security risks and regulation • Maritime cyber security and loss prevention, reputational risk and business interruption • The maritime industry and malware – the owner/ operator perspective • Maritime cyber tech: the good, the bad and the ugly • Can you counter-attack a maritime cyber security attack? • Cyber security health check: benchmarking your company’s ability to withstand a maritime cyber security breach • How to embed maritime cyber security awareness onshore and at sea • Maritime cyber security and the law • What the maritime industry can learn from other industries.

• Most intuitive operation • Maximum chart display • Quick access bar for essential functions • Smart tools for route planning • Advanced functions previously only

known from INS

Book now! Places at this year’s Maritime Cyber Risk Management Summit are strictly limited, but attendance for qualified personnel from shipowners and managers is free. Please contact Paul Dowling on or visit

RAn_ECDIS Guide_90x274.indd 1

13.03.17 11:51


Connectivity is key to ecdis and ENC advances Faster satellite communications and connected ships are transforming ecdis into navigational decision support systems


The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017


he notion of the connected ship invites multiple definitions, driving strategies in different directions across the marine communications and e-navigation markets. What draws ecdis firmly into the debate is its link to the fast emerging discipline of e-navigation, which is transforming traditional navigational information systems into navigational decision support systems. Intelligent data becomes the platform which empowers shore office personnel and those responsible for vessel traffic management. Ecdis is now bonding with the new concept of the integrated navigation system – itself the measurement tool within the broader scope of e-navigation. This gives ecdis a timely new prominence as it enters its final year countdown to being fully mandatory. As Michael Bergmann, president of industry association Comité International RadioMaritime (CIRM), points out, ecdis – even in its current S-52 and S-57 standard – is technology that is already 15 years old. But with the new standard S-102 bathymetric electronic navigational charts (ENCs) now being developed, “ecdis will become an increasingly important asset for e-navigation,” Mr Bergmann commented. Other market drivers are also at work. The rapid switch from paper charts to ENCs has reduced margins and commoditised both the hardware and the

software for bridge manufacturers and distributors alike, accelerating the shift towards connectivity and solutions selling. Advances in data communications enable ENC data to be integrated with frequently updated semi-dynamic data such as weather information and dynamic data


from the ship’s sensors. Last year London, UK-based consultancy The Strategy Works conducted research to consider the overarching technology trends and their likely impact on ecdis and the wider shipping market in 2017 and beyond. It completed 20 in-depth interviews in the third and fourth quarters of 2016 with senior managers from the leading global suppliers of data communications systems, bridge systems and data distributors, to gain their respective sector perspectives and assess the impact this is having on their strategies going forward.

Definitions of connected ships and e-navigation

The term “connected ship” has connotative meanings. Some view it as the connectivity within the ship itself but others highlight advances in ship-to-shore (and shoreto-ship) communications, which have an impact on ecdis. Inmarsat senior vice president Drew Brandy explained: “The connected ship enables shore-based organisations to reach into the vessel and interrogate it, and to optimise its performance.” Canadian distributor Marine Press’ vice president of innovation and technology Nicholas Bourque agreed. “It

is the ability to exchange information fluidly from ship-to-shore, from shoreto-ship and to the different parties involved,” he said. The connected ship in turn defines e-navigation and prompts some ENC data distributors, such as Navtor in Norway, to embrace the concept. It supports Navtor’s vision of shore-based remote monitoring and control, which finds form within its NavStation and NavBox software. Navtor managing director Tor Svanes commented: “Our focus is to bring all kinds of required e-navigation information from ship-toshore and also provide information to the ship from on-shore.” Maritime safety is enhanced by e-navigation which operates rather like an air traffic control model, ensuring the whole vessel is connected to the shore-based control centre and then setting the actual route to avoid accidents. Mr Bergmann expects that ecdis will become an integral part of e-navigation, as it is already part of the integrated bridge. “E-navigation is about increasing communication between ships and ship-toshore,” he explained. “We are approaching a major innovation, as we are moving away from ecdis towards an integrated navigation system with an integrated display. Once

ABOVE: Tor Svanes (Navtor): “Our focus is to bring all kinds of required e-navigation information to and from the ship” BELOW: Transas incorporates the latest integrated systems in its bridge portfolio

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017


that happens there will be marine service portfolios, which are currently under development, such as providing real-time tidal information from tide stations.”

Satellite communications is a pivotal strategy driver

In The Strategy Works research, 85 per cent of those interviewed singled out faster and cheaper satellite communications as the overarching technical facilitator. This was closely followed by the connected ship and its impact on shore-based control – 75 per cent of the respondents. Marlink maritime president Tore Morten Olsen explained how VSAT is improving connectivity. “We have doubled the throughput without any price increase and added gigabyte packages,” he said. The perfect storm of falling data costs and faster speeds enables new product platforms, said Mr Brandy. “We are providing much more capable systems that can support multiple activities, because the vessel has become an ecosystem,” he added. Advances in data communications also stimulate new market entrants. For example, engine manufacturer Wärtsilä acquired Finnish software house Eniram for €43 million in July 2016, spotting its potential for data-driven operational and technical optimisation of vessels. Eniram’s managing director Henrik Dahl explained the reasons. “Eniram’s value is in the insight we provide. We do not just use raw data. We enrich it with advanced modelling along with continuous data collection.” Two months after the acquisition, Eniram launched the SkyLight performance monitoring solution that uses portable hardware and software, sold as a service. On board it only requires a transponder, that is attached to the rail of the ship by the crew. There is no capital investment involved for the shipowner. “We can make a profit at €460 per month, and that provides the owner with a transponder with a satellite connection and full cloud service,” said Mr Dahl. Another provider in the VSAT data communications sector is Orange Business Services. Its maritime division is a fast growing vertical sector, with plans to add 200 vessels per year by 2020. Head of business development and satellite services Michel Verbist believes ship operators can now see the vessel as an office, adding: “Customers want to save on fuel. To achieve that you need to have real-time information, in order to make decisions to follow certain routes.” But it is the data

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017

communications that make it all possible. “Issues can be detected, analysed and solved while the vessel is still navigating,” Mr Verbist explained. The link to e-navigation and hence ecdis moved into sharper focus after Orange unveiled a strategic partnership with chart distributor Global Navigation Solutions (GNS). This sees the integration of GNS’s Voyager software with Orange’s Maritime Connect platform. GNS also acts as a re-seller for Orange. GNS head of marketing Hayley van Leeuwen perceives the benefits: “Software solutions optimised for VSAT will include navigational data download, remote diagnostics, onboard system security and crew WiFi.” The link between satellite communications and ecdis becomes even stronger when shoreside activities such as recruitment are taken into consideration. Martin Taylor, chief executive of global chart distributor, ChartCo, sees crew welfare as a major driver for satellite communications. He added: “Crew want to be able to use social media on other devices on board vessels.” Inmarsat's Mr Brandy said that owners see ship connectivity as a recruitment tool. “Crew are increasingly demanding that they sail on vessels that are internet-enabled,” he added. Another factor in the mix is a variable crew skill base, as observed by Kongsberg Maritime sales manager Roger Trinterud. He believes it is important to build systems that support the moving of competence from the vessel to onshore facilities. For

Kongsberg, the link with ecdis is a key part of the platform. “Our strategy has always been that navigation is part of a ship-wide control system,” he said. Inevitably this accelerates the move towards shore-based management, and the connected ship will provide the tools to support this concept, including condition monitoring to anticipate maintenance requirements. Radio Holland chief operating officer Dennis Mol envisages a more connected future. “A lot of mission critical equipment will be monitored or measured, and the data portal will be kept on shore to eliminate unnecessary visits on board to undertake services,” he said. “If regulations permit, the back of the bridge operations will be moved to shore.”

Partnerships and acquisitions in e-navigation

As suppliers across all sectors realign their strategies they seek partnerships – either with each other or externally. Examples are plentiful. In 20 companies interviewed by The Strategy Works there were 35 partnerships in place. Some global chart distributors, sensing the lower margins that ENCs generate compared to the paper charts that preceded them, have sought to add value through partnerships. For example GNS has partnered with bridge system supplier Sperry Marine to integrate the Voyager passage planning software with Sperry Marine’s bridge software. Emerging marine technologies are fuelling a spate of acquisitions that are

Sperry Marine integrated the Voyager passage planning software with its bridge systems


changing the landscape and, in parallel with private equity, providing funding for the development of innovative partnerships and driving new strategies. Most notable of these is Navico, which has recently been acquired by Altor Private Equity and Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking. They plan to support the growth of Navico with an injection of more capital. This partnership is already on the move, as Goldman Sachs has also joined Altor in the recent acquisition of chart provider C-Map (formerly Jeppesen Marine). Navico’s commercial marine division managing director Nicolas Quéru said that the company’s ambition was to be counted amongst the largest in marine navigation by 2020 with ecdis a key part of that strategy. “Our 2015 acquisition of Maris, coupled with increased collaboration with our sister company C-Map, will deliver innovative solutions for our mutual e-navigation customers,” he said. “New capital will be available to integrate the key elements of the ecdis ecosystem and build optimisation tools to help fleets operate more safely and efficiently.” Other notable acquisitions include Apax Partners private equity investors acquiring both Marlink and Telemar in 2016. These were combined to form an enlarged maritime communications group with a sales turnover of over US$450 million. With leading chart distributors backed by private equity – ChartCo owned by Equistone and GNS by Phoenix Equity Partners – the stage is set for further industry consolidation.

Impact on company strategies

Suppliers across all sectors are refocusing their strategies to align with these new technologies. Transas, which built a reputation for manufacturing its own ecdis hardware and linking it to its ownbranded ENC format, is now switching focus from products to solutions. Transas chief executive Frank Coles said that the company is aiming to become a shore-based integrated fleet operations centre. “We are trying to create an ecosystem in a market which is largely fragmented.” Mr Coles prefers to focus on added value services such as training, where Transas claims 45 per cent of the global market, rather than on lower margin activities such as hardware. Transas is also creating its own cloud-based data platform, the Maritime Industrial Internet. “Shipping companies

Navico acquired Maris�ecdis product portfolio in 2015

want to have one platform for traffic control, to understand and manage the traffic and not just monitor it. So this shared platform is in big demand now within the industry,” Mr Coles explained. C-Map’s strategy is moving in a similar direction. Global sales leader Steve Mariner confirmed that fleet optimisation is part of the business, as is software that provides route optimisation advice to the ship, enabling shore teams to manage the performance of individual ships against set criteria such as fuel usage. New platforms are now emerging to transmit this data ashore. For example, VSAT solutions provider KVH Industries specialises in the costeffective transmission of large files using its multicasting IP-MobileCast service. Robert Hopkins, director of IP-MobileCast services, said: “We connect the ships to the shore by multicasting. Our network is simply not troubled by the problem of sending very large files.” This facilitates the transmission of ENCs and updates, and the forging of more commercial partnerships and new business models. “We distribute chart databases from C-Map and Transas so that our shared customers always have the latest data at the disposal of their bridge officers” Mr Hopkins added. The march towards the connected ship is inevitable, said digital navigational solutions provider Datema’s international sales manager Jelle Glas. He warned about the risks of hacking or virus infection once ecdis becomes integrated rather than a stand-alone tool. “If a ship is sailing with ecdis but the crew does not know that the system has been corrupted by a virus put into it via the web, then that is a big risk.

But all of these systems will be integrated and come online. It will happen,” he said. The impact of the connected ship cuts across all e-navigation suppliers including hydrographic offices such as Primar, which is operated by the Norwegian Hydrographic Service. Primar director Hans Lauritzen said it is developing services to support the distribution of bathymetric data. Navico, too, is working in this area having acquired Contour Innovations which gives it access to bathymetric mapping technology. “Some providers have adapted their applications to support Primar ENC distribution technology and updating mechanisms,” said Mr Lauritzen. Some pilots use hand held devices with an app that is capable of displaying ENCs and downloading updates online. We have several hundred registered users using apps of this kind.” Around 45 per cent of all interviewees foresee a role for mobile devices on the bridge. Furthermore, the growth of crowdsourcing creates a demand for hydrographic offices to verify and accredit unofficial new data sources, which presents them with a new market opportunity. So, faster and lower cost satellite communications, coupled with the connected ship and shore-based controls, are driving innovation in e-navigation. The highest connecting themes in this research was that they intertwine and impact on each other. They are also the main strategy drivers, prompting a surge of technology partnerships and acquisitions across all sectors. It is clear that ecdis and ENCs are an integral part of this transition with all leading distributors now aiming to

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017


provide some form of value-added service, such as back-of-bridge passage planning software linked to ENC permit purchase or a pay-as-you-sail solution. There are a number of competing systems supported by well resourced in-house software teams, such as ChartCo’s PassageManager (installed on 10,000 ships) and GNS’s Voyager. ChartCo has gone a step further by offering, through its acquisition of Regs4Ships, a comprehensive regulatory compliance service for the mariner which it has made pivotal to its strategy. Business models that transcend both the interpretation of the data and its transmission to shore are the most likely to succeed as the concept of e-navigation takes hold. This article has been written by Michael Herson of strategic marketing consultancy The Strategy Works. It specialises in original and global business to business insight within the shipping industry and other sectors. (

KVH offers its own antennas to download ENCs over satellite links

Transas partners with Satcom Global for connected e-navigation Transas and Satcom Global signed a partnership agreement on 8 March in Malta to deliver connectivity to Transas Harmonized Ecosystem of Integrated Solutions (Thesis) platform. Satcom Global will provide its Aura VSAT network so Transas can deliver its unified platform for digital operations on ships and in shorebased offices.

Aura VSAT covers almost all of the main shipping routes



The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017

Transas chief executive Frank Coles expects the VSAT connectivity will deliver navigation and voyage optimisation solutions to shipping. It should also enable ships to connect to shore-based fleet operations centres. Mr Coles commented on the agreement: “Joining the dots of the existing fragmented patchwork of standalone e-navigation and fleet optimisation tools is the primary goal of our Thesis concept. This collaboration will close the circle, linking the dots between ship, fleet operations centres and ship traffic control centres.” He added that it should add further value to the platform of solutions. “It will provide a solid platform to support the future evolution of fleet operation services as they become available,” he said. Transas developed Thesis in reaction to the drive towards digitalisation of shipping and e-navigation developments, Mr Coles said at the Transas conference. He said it was a platform of shared data services, decision support tools and applications to enable the digital maritime industry to operate. Satcom Global will provide access to its global Ku-band network. The Aura VSAT network should be expanded later this year when SES launches a series of high throughput satellites. The broadband capacity will enable data exchanges, such as ecdis updates at the same time as offering connectivity for crew welfare services and vessel operations. Ian Robinson, chief executive of Satcom Global said access to Transas’ extensive portfolio will deliver more solutions to its global customer base of shipowners and managers. He commented: “This provides vessel owners both cost savings and efficiency gains as we move towards a more connected and safer ship.” ECDIS


Raytheon Anschütz designs new ecdis with user feedback

Ecdis NX will have a new graphical user interface for route planning and navigation


aytheon Anschütz is about to launch its new Ecdis NX that it says has been designed by users and not just by software engineers. According to product manager Björn Schröder, Raytheon explicitly considered the human element at all stages of the software and hardware design process to create userfriendly applications and intuitive functions. It used feedback groups that included selected captains, nautical officers and trainers, as well as shipmanagers, seafarers, pilots, academic lecturers and maritime students. “The first step was to collect further in-depth feedback on our ecdis as well as ecdis expectations in general in order to identify the most urgent needs,” Mr Schröder said. “One group was in favour of a more restrained approach, going back to basics with only the main tools available to carry out the task of navigation. This approach was believed to result from functional overload and distractions from

the essential tasks of route monitoring and route planning in current ecdis systems on the market. Another group voted almost for the opposite - a full set of individual functions which should cover all the requirements of a seafarer.” This feedback led to the creation of a wish list of functions and requirements that Raytheon Anschütz forwarded to the software engineers and product managers. Mr Schröder explained: “Navigators were interviewed about their routines during watch on the bridge, resulting in a mind-map of more than 300 tasks and use cases, from route planning to route monitoring and all the preparation and associated documentation.” He added: “The tasks were given an importance rating and grouped according to frequency, such as whether they are performed constantly on watch, several times an hour, several times a day or every time before leaving or entering a port.” The navigators went through the

identified tasks and used cases on a Raytheon Anschütz bridge simulator. They were observed and asked for feedback after each session. These insights were combined with experiences and additional best practice research on other ecdis units to identify good approaches and poor functionality. This led to a prototype of Ecdis NX that included a basic screen layout which enabled the demonstration of essential tasks and use cases such as route planning, Mr Schröder explained. “From the start the feedback valued the clearness of the new user interface and the operational concept,” he said. This included a maximum chart display and a quick access bar which gives access to all main functions with a single action. “The need for additional functionality was accommodated by the implementation of boxes that could be hidden. Any function which requires more than two clicks was explained to be supported by a workflow.” International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) standards were also used to develop the Ecdis NX for integrated navigation systems. These included: • 230 pages of requirements from the IEC 61174 test standard for ecdis • 130 supplementing pages of requirements from the IEC 62288 display standard • 150 pages of the IEC 61924-2 test standard for integrated navigation systems. All these were applied while designing the new ecdis. In December 2016, all the contributors were invited back for a final external review in multiple sessions. “The feedback again indicated an intuitiveness of use throughout the different tasks as well as supportive functions that actually provide assistance to the operator,” said Mr Schröder. Users described Ecdis NX as “intuitive,” “very ease to use,” “userfriendly,” “really nice features” and “a big step forward". Ecdis NX will be unveiled in May this year. ECDIS

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017


Shipping saves US$185 million a year through weather routeing

Kent Zehetner: Combined, ships are saving 600,000 tonnes of fuel per year

Weather routeing using StormGeo’s information services is saving the shipping industry around US$185 million per year through fuel efficiency. More than 6,000 ships are using StormGeo’s weather information to reduce fuel consumption or optimise voyages to meet the exact time of arrival. Most of these are using its Bon Voyage System (BVS) to lower bunker costs and improve ship performance. According to StormGeo chief executive Kent Zehetner, these ships combined are saving 600,000 tonnes of fuel per year. “These are huge savings for shipowners and means our customers are reducing emissions by using our software,” he said. “From an environmental point of view, this saves 1.9 million

tonnes of CO2, which is the equivalent of taking 450,000 cars off the road.” Most types of ships are benefiting from weather routeing, but the majority with BVS on board are container ships, tankers, bulk carriers and roro vessels. “We are optimising routes while also providing efficiency tools for onshore shipmanagement,” said Mr Zehetner. “Data from the vessels enhances the quality, and operators can identify where to improve the performance of their vessels,” he added. StormGeo has more than 20 years of historical routeing data, which shipping technicians can use to optimise routes for better ship performance. Ship operators can also use this

database to benchmark their vessels against others. They can use StormGeo’s AWT SmartWatch software to run diagnostics on different parameters of ship performance to make improvements, or they can use a separate module for monitoring, reporting and verifying CO2 emissions. On the questions of security and data ownership, Mr Zehetner said there were clear procedures and barriers. “We need to be very careful how we utilise the data,” he said. “Customers own their data, but we run analytics on anonymised data, so that is protected.” He continued: “We use the latest security protocols, so we have the right cyber security procedures in place.”

Seall Ecdis to be launched in April UK company Seall Ecdis Ltd is preparing to unveil its typeapproved ecdis which has a touchscreen display and a simplified user interface. The first Seall ecdis units are being tested on offshore support vessels operating out of the UK before the official launch in April this year. According to managing director, Des Neill, the ecdis is approved to the latest standards from the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) and the International Hydrographic Organization (IHO). “We now have ecdis with a Hatteland X-Series touchscreen display that is type-approved for the front of the bridge and built on our own ENC kernel technology.” said Mr Neill. Seall Ecdis uses electronic navigational charts (ENCs) from the Admiralty Vector Chart Service and Primar in the S-57 standard and also from the US Government’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Mr Neill said that not many shipowners use ENCs from NOAA, but they are economical as a tenth of the cells are free, adding, “so people should use them.” Feedback from deck officers and ship operators was important in the development of Seall Ecdis, said Mr Neill. The feedback suggested that captains do not want complex ecdis but want the key functions. He explained: “We wanted to keep simplicity at the

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017

heart of what we were developing, modelling the graphical user interface on smartphone and tablet technology. The user interface needed to be clean and uncluttered, but the screen buttons needed to be appropriately sized for touch operation. The result is a multi-touch user interface that puts incredible power at mariners’ fingertips and makes even the most complex work more natural to do.“ Because Seall Ecdis has been designed to be highly intuitive, the company believes that crews will need a lot less support from shipping company IT departments than with other systems. Mr Neill added “Because it is so simple, most crews can be fully selfsufficient in no time”. It comes with familiarisation training software that can be downloaded onto Windows and Apple Mac computers as well as Android, iOS and Windows tablet devices. Seall says that the new ecdis has been very competitively priced to make it affordable to all shipping companies worldwide and ideal for companies looking to retrofit an efficient, user-friendly and easyto-install solution to comply with IMO ecdis carriage requirements. Seall is offering customers the option to either purchase a system upfront or to pick a bundle that can include hardware, maintenance, ENCs and other data for a fixed monthly all-inclusive fee in conjunction with their distribution partners. ECDIS


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DFDS ferry Pearl Seaways hosted the e-Navigation Underway International Conference


his was one of the many messages from the 7th e-Navigation Underway International Conference that was held in February this year on board DFDS ferry Pearl Seaways*. In a key presentation, Johan Gahnström, senior marine manager at Intertanko and a former Vessel Traffic Services (VTS) manager, gave qualified support to the latest e-navigation developments. It is imperative that organisations such as Intertanko supported a shared situational awareness between the ship and shore. However, much more commonality of systems and harmonisation of information displays is needed, if e-navigation was not to add to the complexity of ecdis and navigation. The variations on ecdis displays were not acceptable, said Capt Gahnström.

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017


Furthermore, Intertanko had genuine concerns about how much information could be displayed on an ecdis, with graphical layers or information pop-ups. This is “before it stops becoming a useable tool for safe navigation,” he commented. The definition of what an ecdis is, and is not, might have to be revisited by IMO, and Capt Gahnström even raised the possibility of an additional display system as part of a mandatory integrated navigation system, with inevitable cost implications for shipowners. The International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) is developing a universal hydrographic data model (S-100) that is designed for data interoperability in order to standardise data that is provided in electronic navigational charts (ENCs) for ecdis. In her capacity as chair of IHO’s


S-100 working group Julia Powell said that sea trials with S-100 would help to solve data portrayal issues. She explained that more harmonised data portrayal had to be achieved, and obscuring layers of information should be avoided. There was an urgent need to provide support for complex data loading scenarios, such as data overlays and replacements, and for a comprehensive hierarchy of data and display priorities. “The mariner cannot do all this,” she said, “and that is why we spent so much time completing the S-100 standard.” The work involved by necessity “an iterative process”. The IHO is developing specifications for the next-generation of navigation products using the S-100 standard. It is addressing a whole array of maritime requirements other than just ecdis as there is progress on e-navigation. By way of example, IHO is working on standards for high-resolution bathymetry (S-102), under keel clearance management (S-129), surface currents (S-111), and marine protected areas (S-122). Meanwhile, as a rich geospatial data standard, S-100 not only supports a dynamic ecdis but also provides the baseline for the common maritime data infrastructure for e-navigation. The new S-101 standard currently under development for ENCs is based on S-100 but, according to Ms Powell, marks “a major step forward”. It will eventually replace the S-57 for ENCs that are currently loaded into different ecdis models. There may be dual data streams for some time as the IHO’s S-100 working group is looking at utilising a convertor to allow hydrographic offices time to upgrade their chart production systems. The e-Navigation Underway International Conference showcased testbeds and the development of practical e-navigation solutions, such as tactical route exchange for display on ecdis. For example, the Norwegian-funded SESAME testbed focuses on the shore-side element augmenting route planning by ship bridge personnel. The project is concerned with secure, efficient and safe maritime traffic management in the Straits of Malacca and Singapore and aims to develop computerbased (automated) risk prediction tools providing what-if functionality for different sailing options. Anticipated traffic hot-spots are then communicated to the ship for display on ecdis, allowing the master the option of altering the original

planned route. Kongsberg Norcontrol IT’s project manager Todd Schuett highlighted technical aspects related to the need to incorporate the shore-to-ship collaborative element in the route format standard IEC 61174. He also stressed that digital communication for route sharing would need to rely on the emerging, higher data transfer capacity of the VHF Data Exchange System (VDES). They would also be based on new data standards linked to the common maritime data structure for e-navigation and the S-100 framework for data exchange. A testbed of the Finnish Transport Agency conducted in Finnish coastal VTS centres is similarly concerned with providing an additional, external safety check on route planning through two-way electronic communication (ship-to-shore and shoreto-ship). Ships from several companies that have regular traffic in Finnish ports participate in the Enhanced Navigation Support Information (ENSI) service. The testbed is also used to demonstrate several other e-navigation services, such as weather routeing, navigational warnings, and ice navigation information. A next phase of the testbed will focus on the integration of these services with other navigational equipment – either ecdis or other dedicated e-navigation displays that are connected with navigation systems. Tuomas Martikainen of the Finnish Transport Agency said that feedback from participating shipping companies had been encouraging. However, even though the requirements for online

communication were kept to a minimum, the variation in ships’ IT environments and communication methods posed a challenge, with implications for identification, authentication and security. Mariners gave positive feedback on the ENSI service for real-time ice information in clear graphical format and electronic communication of detailed ice waypoint and route recommendations. Not having to depend on VHF radio communications was a distinct safety benefit. Meanwhile, the Russian Ministry of Transport is working with the Kronstadt Group and Transas on the Hermitage e-navigation testbed in Russia. In co-operation with other partners, the testbed is scheduled to run until 2020. It has a budget of €5 million and covers sea, river and lake segments, with a transition from the Neva River to the Ladoga Lake. It involves one coastal VTS at Petrodvorets on the southern shore of the Gulf of Finland and one river VTS at the Ladoga Lake entrance. There are seven sea-going ships and five river vessels participating in the e-navigation tests. The testbed operations integrate Glonass position fixing, shore-based automatic identification system (AIS) infrastructure, AIS aids to navigation, portable pilotage units, shipboard AIS and ecdis. * The e-Navigation Underway International Conference series is hosted by the Danish Maritime Authority on board Pearl Seaways plying the Copenhagen-Oslo-Copenhagen route and co-organised by the International Association of Marine Aids to Navigation.

Port collaboration and decision making group established Leading governmental and non-governmental maritime organisations are setting up the Port Collaborative Decision Making (CDM) group for establishing the necessary overarching guidelines, processes and procedures for interaction between ships and ports worldwide. This will encourage port synchronised approaches and fast turnaround times for visiting vessels by standardised, safe, and secure communications in real-time. PortCDM will encourage greater interaction and data exchange between ships and ports to promote efficient just-in-time operations, better situational awareness and planning. The focus of PortCDM is locally driven because port operations may be vastly different between individual ports. However, ports are hubs within the international maritime trade context and cannot be looked at separately, especially once ships are in the centre of the action. It is essential that a common framework is defined, which allows for customisation of a system to meet each port’s specific needs. However, it should provide enough standardisation that ships can move from port to port and best utilise the different implementations of PortCDM. ECDIS

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017


What are the challenges for navigating drone ships?

Unmanned ships will need secure and reliable satellite communications and GPS (credit: Rolls-Royce)


here are human, technical and operational challenges awaiting remote-controlled ships, as there are with flying drones, says Jim Creber*, a squadron leader in the UK's Royal Air Force. One of the biggest challenges is maintaining situational awareness if the control of vessels is moved to shore. As crew are dislocated from ship operations, the remote control team needs to remain engaged. Sqn Ldr Creber said there are operational pressures on the remote control team on an hourly, daily and weekly basis. For flying drone operations, the team only needs to maintain situational awareness for a few hours, but this would be very different with remotely controlled ships. He was describing these challenges in a keynote speech at Transas’ global conference in Malta in March. There would be questions to address about who is in control of the vessel and whether they are situationally aware. Technology will be key to providing aids for situational awareness, particularly an advanced form of ecdis. Or on an e-navigation unit that might be similar in type to ecdis on vessels, or might be more like a 3D voyage tracker, with CCTV and radar overlaying a forward viewer. Among the human challenges associated with the use of drones, Sqn Ldr Creber listed the fading of practical skills as a result of further automation, the reduction in human diagnostics skills, and a loss of competency in seafarers. He also said there would be a reduction in job satisfaction and in the transferability of personnel between different ship types, and challenges in retention. He asked how owners of unmanned ships would keep the best trained and most competent people, as control moved ashore. Of the operational challenges, the biggest is the higher technical complexity of remote-controlled ships, in the same way as drones are more complex than manned aircraft. Sqn Ldr Creber said that this means drones are more difficult to maintain and need specialised technical personnel and industry support. The damage and repair costs are also higher, while recovery time is longer than for manned units. There are higher value

The Complete Guide to ECDIS | 2017

components, which increases the cost of spare parts, and maintenance can be time-critical. Sqn Ldr Creber said that diagnostics are also more critical, as systems are more integrated and automated. This means a reduced ability to fully assess the risks associated with complex and inter-related systems. He said that the technical challenges of drones include managing the exploitation of data links and maintaining reliable and secure satellite communications. Considerable satellite capacity is required to provide the remote links to drones. Transas technical simulation product development manager Graham Wagstaff questioned whether there was enough redundancy in satellite communications and especially global navigation satellite systems, such as GPS. “If satellite communications and GPS can be jammed, then what will happen to remote controlled ships?” he asked. “There could be ships on the oceans without anyone controlling them." Another technical challenge would be accident avoidance. There have been several moves in recent years to develop algorithms that will enable ships to avoid structures and other maritime users. These would need to be linked to whatever ecdis or e-navigation system is used ashore. But, according to Sqn Ldr Creber, aircraft drones are remotecontrolled not autonomous. They require control room teams that are as well trained as pilots, a similar qualification as captains or navigators. There is also the question of how they should be trained. There is a feeling that IMO should be developing training standards for the shore control room teams, and the model courses should incorporate advanced navigation modules. Overall, shipowners will have major challenges to face and will not remove the human factor by investing in unmanned vessels. They may just move the challenges ashore. ECDIS *Jim Creber is principal lead for RAF engineering policy and is a subject matter expert in human factors and safety management with the RAF Safety Centre.

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The Complete Guide to ECDIS 2017  

The Complete Guide to ECDIS is an indispensable resource for those contemplating ECDIS carriage and those already in the process of an ECDIS...