Page 78: of Marine News Magazine (November 2019)
TECHNOLOGY “... there are still maritime companies out there still working within a traditional framework of manual processes which are becoming less relevant, practicable and competitive with every passing day. As the industry moves inexorably towards integration and automation in everything from supply chains and logistics to vessel control and port operations, the need to adopt a considered long-term digital strategy becomes ever more pressing.” life, from planning and acquisition through to operation boat, tug or pilot boat as appropriate.
and maintenance (and, ? nally, disposal). If the RALamander ? reboat series represents digital
Value chain transformation, meanwhile, involves the technology’s future potential, the fact remains that there integration of a company’s ? nancial and operational struc- are still maritime companies out there still working within tures in order to strengthen and coordinate the overall cor- a traditional framework of manual processes which are be- porate framework while achieving transparency between coming less relevant, practicable and competitive with ev- internal departments and third-party agents. In regard to ery passing day. As the industry moves inexorably towards operational excellence, this encourages ? rms to automate integration and automation in everything from supply key processes from the ground up, starting with basic ad- chains and logistics to vessel control and port operations, ministrative functions – for example, installing analytical the need to adopt a considered long-term digital strategy dashboards, moving from paper to digital logbooks – but becomes ever more pressing.
potentially leading to increased autonomy in the operation of custom-designed, state-of-the-art vessels. Integrated digital platforms
One example of the latter, an uncrewed and remotely- An admitted stumbling block for some is the perceived operated ? reboat series design named RALamander, is enormity and expense of collating, consolidating, encrypt- currently under development by Vancouver-based naval ing, storing, sharing and leveraging all-important data architects and marine engineers Robert Allan Ltd in col- streams from numerous different sources, all the while laboration with Kongsberg Maritime. The thinking be- balancing transparency with con? dentiality – and main- hind the ? reboat’s ? exibly autonomous capabilities is sim- taining stringent cyber security protocols. The fear is that ply to enable ? rst responders to tackle hazardous port ? res having to use a series of different applications to access involving explosion risks or toxic smoke more rapidly and data stored in multiple discrete databases would be time- assertively than would previously have been possible, while consuming, costly, vulnerable and a hindrance to the pro- the ? re? ghters themselves can control operations via a re- vision of a joined-up view, with all the disadvantages for mote console in conditions of total safety. The deployment decision-making and pro? t margins that this would entail.
of Kongsberg Maritime’s low-latency, high-bandwidth It might seem like the logical way to deal with these is- control and communications system means that the semi- sues at a stroke is for companies to adopt an integrated portable operator console can be located on a manned ? re- digital platform which acts as a uni? ed, central, single-
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