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MARINE INTELLIGENCE | 107

OEMs

seek the digital sweet spot

Digitalisation may be the buzzword, but levels of adoption remain relatively low. How are OEMs taking it to the mainstream?

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hipping has repeatedly been told that digitisation of vessels and equipment will be the main driver of innovation and business for the forseeable future, with ever-greater levels of remote internet connectivity and developments in data analytics to come. Given such predictions, end users might be forgiven for asking how far this

RIGHT: “Digital is very much part of our core business,” Marco Ryan, chief digital officer, Wärtsilä (see page 110)

www.mpropulsion.com

revolution has progressed in the propulsion market. Clearly, enginebuilders and OEMs have been prioritising this aspect of their businesses in recent years, seeing it as a valuable tool and a very useful potential income stream. Perhaps earliest to this market was ABB, which now has six ‘Collaborative Operation Centers’ worldwide. The latest of these is the ABB Ability

Collaborative Operations Center in Miramar, Florida. This will remotely monitor hundreds of ships globally, and will work in conjunction with similar facilities in Asia and Europe. ABB is opening an additional such centre in Genoa, Italy, which will have an emphasis on automation systems, in addition to its regular duties to customers. These six centres currently monitor more than 700 ships, a figure ABB hopes to increase to 3,000 by 2020. But as Juha Koskela, managing director of ABB’s marine and ports business, pointed out: “Let’s not forget there are still 90,000 ships operating without this technology, so things aren’t yet changing that fast.” On the levels of adoption of digitisation, Mr Koskela told Marine Propulsion: “It varies from sector to sector and shipowner to shipowner how fast adoption is taking place. Cruise ships are the early adopters, and we’re lucky that we have very close connections to all the cruise operators. They are very advanced in this area.” Mr Koskela sees ABB as ideally positioned to exploit the new technology – not least because of its experience in

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery | August/September 2017

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Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery August/September 2017  

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery provides the technical, operational and project teams that work for the ship owner/operator/manager...

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery August/September 2017  

Marine Propulsion & Auxiliary Machinery provides the technical, operational and project teams that work for the ship owner/operator/manager...