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  • Dynamic Positioning has been around for a while, it is evolving and it is here to stay. Here to sort it all out are two of industry’s more familiar stakeholders who also explain what might come next.

    When it comes to critical offshore operations and vessel handling, this is not your grandfather’s marine industry, and it hasn’t been for some time. That’s because the bridge layout and equipment commonly found on any recently delivered offshore service vessel would be unfamiliar to the typical deck officer of just 20 years ago. Much of that can be attributed to the advent of dynamic positioning equipment systems.

    DP – perhaps like no other skill at sea – has changed the role of the deck officer. The technical requirements to qualify and operate this equipment are vast. And yet, Ben Todd, Vice President and COO of Beier Integrated Systems, a major stakeholder in the DP equipment markets, discounts the impact, saying, “I don’t believe DP technology was disruptive at all. The companies that embraced the technology, properly outfitted the vessels and adequately trained the crews increased safety, gained efficiency and performed offshore operations that were not possible prior to DP.”

    Dave Johnson, Product Development Director of GE’s Power Conversion business, puts it a different way. “It is fair to say DP was a disruptive technology when introduced. It changed the game for two ships when working in close proximity. Now DP is the indispensable technology for offshore operations.”

    Both Beier Integrated Systems, LLC and GE’s Power Conversion business own and operate U.S. Gulf Coast-based training facilities that specifically target dynamic positioning skills. The Marine Training Institute (TMTI) located in Gray, LA is owned by Beier Radio Company. Among other navigation specific courses, the school offers Nautical Institute Basic and Advance, and OSVDPA (Phase 1, Phase 3 Courses and Assessments) for dynamic positioning. Almost 1,500 mariners have passed through this school since 2014, many of them, repeat customers.

    GE’s Marine training school in Houston provides training on all aspects of diesel electric propulsion systems and Dynamic Positioning systems. GE dedicates classrooms to Dynamic Positioning Systems Basic Induction Training (where new DP candidates are introduced to the concepts of DP), DP Advanced Simulation (where experienced DP operators are tested and given final DP certification) and a program dedicated to DP Sea time reduction. According to GE, students utilizing their full bridge simulator can reduce the requirement for DP hours at sea by undergoing advanced simulation scenarios, exposing the operators to a wide range of experiences and equipment failure scenarios.

    Both schools provide training that complies with both the Nautical Institute and the newer Offshore Service Vessel Dynamic Positioning Authority (OSVDPA) requirements.

    TMTI uses the latest state-of-the-art DP equipment; in this case, the Beier ICVS 4000 DP System. Similarly, GE’s facility was designed from the ground up to use the latest generations of GE Dynamic Positioning equipment, as well as its C series automation and propulsion drive technologies. Here, like at TMTI, students can get ‘hands on’ experience with the actual equipment they will encounter on ships.

    The DP credentialing process is very straight forward in all the schemes, with each posting the process on their respective websites. There are some differences between OSVDPA, NI and DNV, but any USCG credentialed mariner can start the process by taking an OSVDPA Phase one Induction course, or NI induction course. Under both the Nautical Institute and OSVDPA certification schemes, certificates expire after 5 years. And, they both require actual time on DP vessels, utilizing the DP system in order to revalidate their certificates. In order to maintain a DP operator’s license, the operator must continue to work a number of hours per year at the DP desk to maintain familiarity. These hours can also be accumulated on a Class A Full mission simulator. GE’s Johnson adds, “After a long lull in activity we are now seeing the uptick in demand for experienced DP operators with associated increased throughput in our training school.”

    A DP operator who certifies on one OEM’s equipment can legally operate on another. The equipment manufacturer is not part of the certification process. The “buttonology” from one system manufacturer to the other is different but the function of the systems is essentially the same. Ben Todd explains, “The DP training schools provide operator training to the students. This includes DP operation planning, risk assessing, communications, use of decision support tools (ASOGs, CAM/TAM), manual control of vessels and structured practical experience. It is not system, manufacturer or vessel specific. There is no way for a school to train on every system configuration or vessel configuration. The vessel and system specific training is performed on the vessel the DPO is assigned to by the crew or the vessel owner’s representative.”

    GE’s Dave Johnson also weighed in, explaining, “Although the training here is carried out on GE’s DP system, what we are really training people in, is the safe and efficient operation of DP systems and vessels. We do, however, also provide training courses aimed at people transitioning from other DP to GE DP systems. These are simple familiarization courses that assume the operator understands the underlying principles of Dynamic Positioning and focuses on efficient operation of our systems.”

    Nevertheless, cautions Johnson, “We would always recommend that an operator becomes familiar with the latest equipment he is operating. Often in normal operation the transition to a new system appears very straight forward, but a DP operator must be able to smartly assess and act in failure conditions. As such, we recommend all people new to using our systems to attend the training class.”

    DP: software, and hardware, too
    Beier boasts as many as 650 DP systems in use  worldwide. GE has, since the 1970’s, built more than 950 systems. Beier has been distributing, manufacturing and supporting DP and DP-related equipment for a similar period of time. Both list many of the recognizable offshore stakeholders as repeat clients; Hornbeck Offshore and Logitel Offshore, to name just a couple.

    Beyond the requirement for mariners to be qualified for DP operations by a recognized authority, the same can hold true for the vessels, as well. For example, some vessels are “certified for DP” and others are not. Typically, these determinations are made by the ship owner as an early part of vessel development. Some vessels do not have a formal need for DP, yet equipped with one for the convenience of operation. DP class notification is provided by the classification societies such as ABS, LRS or DNV.  Jonson adds, “Primarily it is the vessel end user – or charterer – who dictates what type of vessel they need and whether there is a requirement for a certain DP class.”  

    At the same time, the terms ‘DP1’ and ‘DP2’ (redundancy) are frequently bantered about – especially by operators trying to boast about their tonnage and its safety. Moving from DP class 1 to 2 and 3, the DP and most significantly the ships propulsion systems are configured with a higher level of redundancy, meaning the system can safely operate through more levels of supporting equipment failure. Higher class DP systems are attractive to charterers. They greatly reduce the risk of an equipment failure resulting in the ship having to return to the shore for repairs.  

    Changes in the Wind
    DP has been described as a ‘mature technology.’ With that maturity, the pricing to outfit vessels with DP has come down appreciably. And, says Beier’s Todd, “The software is mature but advancements in hardware and sensor technology continues to evolve; therefore R&D continues.” GE’s Johnson agrees, adding, “It has never been so cost-effective to outfit a vessel with a DP system.”

    GE’s DP equipment has a long history with proven reliability. Its latest ‘SeaStream’ DP technology involves an operator interface that was totally revised form the ground up, producing the latest in state-of-the-art intuitive operator interfaces. “The interface is highly suited to the latest generation of mariners who expect interfaces to be as simple and intuitive as those found on modern consumer electronics such as iPhones,” adds Johnson.

    DP: Critically Important Now, and in the future
    Since its inception, DP has always been important when it comes to offshore oil and gas work; in good times and bad. As the offshore wind boom finally looks to be taking off in the United States, DP operations will take on an increasingly important role, especially if the Jones Act creates a market for ‘repurped’ OSV tonnage to satisfy domestic offshore wind requirements. Underscoring that reality, Ben Todd explains, “DP will be just as important to the offshore wind market as it is to offshore oil and gas. Both need a stable, well positioned vessel to provide equipment, support, maintenance and supplies to the offshore structures.”

    All that said; any type of offshore operation that needs precision maneuvering and stable positioning will benefit from DP. For example, GE’s DP system was recently chosen by Shanghai Salvage Bureau for its deep-water dive support vessel (DSV). Separately, dive vessels, fishing vessels, cruise ships, heavy lift vessels, autonomous vessels and military vessels are just a few examples of vessels that benefit from DP. As DP technology evolves, sensor technology is allowing DP systems the capability to do things they  couldn’t, just 10 short years ago. Todd adds, “As this technology continues to develop, it will open new opportunities for DP in other market sectors.”

    As DP systems evolve further, more efficient operations via simpler operator interfaces will produce ‘greener’ operating modes that help reduce fuel consumption and emissions. After all, anything that contributes to reducing any vessel’s carbon footprint is becoming increasing important.
    Providing a glimpse of what comes next, GE’s Johnson predicts, “There is a growing demand for more and eventually fully autonomous vessels. DP systems provide a more precise way to control a vessel’s systems, whereas the guiding inputs to the DP may come for advanced AI systems rather than operators.” No one will be surprised if he is right.

    This article first appeared in the September 2019 print edition of MarineNews magazine.

  • The modern offshore maritime industry heavily relies on different classes of DP vessels, from OSVs to Drillships and Tankers, almost all vessels serving the oil and gas industry need to be DP capable in order to safely operate offshore. The massive growth experienced in Brazil due to the uncorking of huge

  • The modern offshore maritime industry relies on a variety of DP vessels, from OSVs to Drillships and tankers, almost all vessels serving the oil and gas industry need to be DP capable in order to safely operate offshore. The growth experienced in Brazil due to the uncorking of huge deepwater pre-salt plays

  • The latest version of K-Sim DP, a Dynamic Positioning (DP) Maneuvering simulator from Kongsberg Maritime received Class A Certification from DNV, making it compliant with the highest DNV standard for DP simulators according to Standard of Certification of Maritime Simulators number 2.14. K-Sim DP is built

  • , ROV, and subsea construction operations. With very few exceptions, these functions are performed by complex platforms incorporating dynamic positioning (DP) technology. When contracted for active service, these assets were subject to a high level of technical scrutiny that provided assurance to all stakeholders

  • Offshore activities, looks back at the company's role in the development of Dynamic Positioning Systems In recent years, dynamic positioning (DP) systems have become almost as accepted a feature of certain types of marine and offshore vessels as autopilot. DP — which automatically controls

  • As the marine industry ponders decarbonization, the world’s first all-electric and completely emissions-free ship, Future of the Fjords delivers. Future of the Fjords was commissioned as part of the shipowner’s program of fleet renewal with  the backing of Fjord1, the largest ferry operator in Norway

  • most obscure skill sets in today’s rapidly emerging workboat landscape is also arguably its most important. Kongsberg today remains at the cutting edge of DP training and credentialing efforts.    Not lost in last month’s Offshore Service Vessel Dynamic Positioning Authority (OSVDPA) announcement that Kongsberg

  • Kongsberg Marine launched the Compact DP Series from Kongsberg Maritime. A solution for the smaller vessel and operator, it offers a complete DP class 1 solution for dynamically positioned vessels and is designed to meet the requirements of Offshore Service Vessels and workboats. The system consists o

  • When Global Industries contacted Thrustmaster of Texas to help upgrade the Titan 2 heavy lift vessel for dynamic positioning (DP), the Louisiana-based company found more benefits than expected. Although not one of the original goals, a result of the conversion was a vessel that can maintain station

  • system (INS) to interface with third-party acoustic positioning equipment, providing INS-enhanced acoustic data input to marine dynamic positioning (DP) systems. DP-PHINS can also take data from a range of additional sensors, some not normally associated with DP, such as Doppler velocity logs (DVL),

  • .”  When, and if, finalized and promulgated, the rulemaking would constitute the first government regulations specifically applicable to dynamic positioning (DP) systems. Positioning by dynamic means involves a sophisticated engineering system that allows or has the potential to allow virtually any vessel to

  • MT Oct-19#33  pattern of success in  ing and DP; mooring; offshore ?  oat-
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    October 2019 - Marine Technology Reporter page: 33

    aquaculture and wind energy — are expected to need. Sharing the wealth The Ocean Lab still studies seakeep- The national pattern of success in ing and DP; mooring; offshore ? oat- Norway has been to share new dis- ing production and loading; risers and coveries; new product or patent ac- pipelines …

  • MN Sep-19#47  positioning will bene?  t 
from DP. For example, GE’s DP system)
    September 2019 - Marine News page: 47

    to the offshore struc- tures.” All that said; any type of offshore operation that needs precision maneuvering and stable positioning will bene? t from DP. For example, GE’s DP system was recently cho- sen by Shanghai Salvage Bureau for its deep-water dive support vessel (DSV). Separately, dive vessels

  • MN Sep-19#46  
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training is performed)
    September 2019 - Marine News page: 46

    DYNAMIC POSITIONING vessel con? guration. The requirement for a certain vessel and system speci? c DP class.” training is performed on At the same time, the the vessel the DPO is as- terms ‘DP1’ and ‘DP2’ signed to by the crew or (redundancy) are fre- the vessel owner’s repre- quently bantered

  • MN Sep-19#45 DYNAMIC POSITIONING
“DP will be just as important to the)
    September 2019 - Marine News page: 45

    DYNAMIC POSITIONING “DP will be just as important to the offshore wind market as it is to offshore oil and gas. Both need a stable, well positioned vessel to provide equipment, support, maintenance and supplies to the offshore structures.” – Ben Todd, Vice President and COO, Beier Integrated Systems (Ph

  • MN Sep-19#44  Inegrated Systems
The ABC’s of DP 101
Dynamic Positioning)
    September 2019 - Marine News page: 44

    DYNAMIC POSITIONING Credit: Beier Inegrated Systems The ABC’s of DP 101 Dynamic Positioning has been around for a while, it is evolving and it is here to stay. Here to sort it all out are two of industry’s more familiar stakeholders who also explain what might come next. By Joseph Keefe hen it comes to

  • MN Sep-19#6  about 
Dynamic Positioning (DP), that now familiar but)
    September 2019 - Marine News page: 6

    needs of the domestic waterfront change, there is one thing that will no doubt come along for the ride. Of course, we’re talking about Dynamic Positioning (DP), that now familiar but critical part of the offshore oil industry. As DP evolves ever more sophisticated, it also beckons to offshore wind contractors

  • MN Sep-19#2  them?  
By Giorgos Plevrakis
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    September 2019 - Marine News page: 2

    Some forecasts expect 10% of the global ? eet to be powered by LNG by 2030; 25% by 2050. Will your vessels be among them? By Giorgos Plevrakis DP OPERATIONS & TRAINING 44 The ABC’s of DP 101 Dynamic Positioning has been around for a while, it is evolving and it is here to stay. By Joseph

  • MT Jul-19#71  tem includes the conversion to DP3 closed-bus operation 
viding)
    July 2019 - Marine Technology Reporter page: 71

    AKA’s full scope of supply for the Spitsbergen Hybrid Sys- ice ? elds. The system can also outline open water leads, pro- tem includes the conversion to DP3 closed-bus operation viding real-time radar imagery to assist in route planning and the addition of 5.6 MW of hybrid power. The thrust- through dynamic

  • MT Jul-19#28 MTR 100
RBR
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President/CEO: Greg)
    July 2019 - Marine Technology Reporter page: 28

    MTR 100 RBR Ottawa, Ontario, Canada President/CEO: Greg Johnson No. of Employees: 60 rbr-global.com Photo: RBR RBR has maintained a year-over-year growth rate of over more attentive sales and technical support and enter into closer 20%. RBR customers are actively using Generation³ products collaborations

  • MT Jul-19#26  a day per 
and need two ROVs, DP-controlled node handling)
    July 2019 - Marine Technology Reporter page: 26

    looking at revolutionising the way ocean bottom nodes are in- stalled on the sea? oor,” says Tjøm. “The competitors do 40-170 a day per and need two ROVs, DP-controlled node handling systems, a large vessel and specialized crew. The deeper you go, ROVs are slower as they need more thrust to pull the umbilical

  • MP Q3-19#48  ed Port Executive    www.certi? edportexecutive.com  (902) 425-3980
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    Jul/Aug 2019 - Maritime Logistics Professional page: 48

    .arconas.com Please visit us online 17 Connecticut Port Authority www.CTPortAuthority.com (860) 577-5174 37 CPE Certi? ed Port Executive www.certi? edportexecutive.com (902) 425-3980 3 Elme Spreader AB www.elme.com Visit our website 11 Interferry 2019 www.InterferryConference.com Visit our

  • MR Aug-19#66  REPORT THE MIDDLE EAST
Dubai DP World
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    August 2019 - Maritime Reporter and Engineering News page: 66

    R REGION REPORT THE MIDDLE EAST Dubai DP World solidated cargo as well as easy connec- Rail and Abu Dhabi Ports to support the Saqr and Al Jazeera Port. “Each one of ect will make Saqr Port one of the largest tivity with container terminals in Khalifa growth and diversi? cation of the UAE the ports

  • MR Aug-19#65 , the full range of container 
DP World currently has ?  ve)
    August 2019 - Maritime Reporter and Engineering News page: 65

    full and partial Leading port in the Emirates late last year when Cosco Shipping Ports (CSP) inau- bonded container shipments, the full range of container DP World currently has ? ve terminals in Dubai, three gurated the CSP Abu Dhabi Terminal at Khalifa Port; packing services, short-term warehousing for

  • MR Aug-19#35 , OW, 
P, SEEMP), LMC, PSMR* UMS, DP(AM), NAV1, PCAC 
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    August 2019 - Maritime Reporter and Engineering News page: 35

    cu. m. Classi? cation Lloyd Register of Shipping astander.es d astican.es VISIT: 100A1, Passenger Ship, *IWS, EC0 (BWT, IHM, OW, P, SEEMP), LMC, PSMR* UMS, DP(AM), NAV1, PCAC QUALITY HSE PROJECT MANAGEMENT 1, 3 www.marinelink.com 35 MR #8 (34-41).indd 35 7/29/2019 12:27:42 P

  • MR Aug-19#33  comfort and safety. The Ul- a “DP light” system compared to)
    August 2019 - Maritime Reporter and Engineering News page: 33

    said “The vessel is equipped with passenger Roald Amundsen, with initial newbuild vessel to be built to stringent increased comfort and safety. The Ul- a “DP light” system compared to the itineraries along the Norwegian coast. PC2 standard (year-round operation in stein X-BOW has also an advantage in most

  • MR Aug-19#31  vessel. We have increased 
DP vessels, we have been building)
    August 2019 - Maritime Reporter and Engineering News page: 31

    has many years of experience with from De Hoop said the importance of in production ef? ciency and also we are the technical vessel. We have increased DP vessels, we have been building them lessons learned, as it continues its foray now more able to integrate the various our organization in this part

  • MN Aug-19#91  FEATURE:
TECHNICAL TECHNICAL
DP Equipment & Training Communicatio)
    August 2019 - Marine News page: 91

    OCTOBER Vessel Conversion and Repair Autonomous Workboats MARKET MARKET Offshore Wind Multi-Mission Workboats FEATURE: FEATURE: TECHNICAL TECHNICAL DP Equipment & Training Communications FEATURE: FEATURE: PRODUCT Electronics & Navigation Hull and Deck Coatings PRODUCT FEATURE: FEATURE: Equipment SPECIAL

  • MN Aug-19#81  
thruster, and Rolls Royce’s DP product. Thrustmaster contin-
ues)
    August 2019 - Marine News page: 81

    , INC. tion of several hybrid propulsion system patents, including the acquisition of a podded permanent magnet electric motor thruster, and Rolls Royce’s DP product. Thrustmaster contin- ues to strive to deliver the highest quality and most complete package to customers through these and other initiatives

  • MN Aug-19#68  low num-
sitioning Authority (OSVDPA) announced that the Texas)
    August 2019 - Marine News page: 68

    for the Future Late last year, the Offshore Service Vessel Dynamic Po- domestic blue water ? eet has dwindled to record low num- sitioning Authority (OSVDPA) announced that the Texas bers. On the other hand, more that 98 percent of the na- A&M Maritime Academy at Texas A&M University at tion’s merchant

  • MN Aug-19#53  and sea phases.
tioning (DP) simulators, radar simulators)
    August 2019 - Marine News page: 53

    during a two year program alternating between Kongsberg’s Neptune liquid cargo simulator, dynamic posi- classroom training and sea phases. tioning (DP) simulators, radar simulators, Transas ECDIS STAR Center also develops in-house modeling capabili- simulator and GMDSS simulator with Poseidon software

  • MR Jul-19#35  will include 
Positioning (DP) functionality for 
Despite)
    July 2019 - Maritime Reporter and Engineering News page: 35

    be imple- System (IBS) with K-Pos Dynamic Unique & Classy “I love being close to the sea. I had great mented. Competent experts will include Positioning (DP) functionality for Despite all the strict regulations and fun elaborating the unique spirit of this the ? ttings specialists from Franke two ultra-luxur

  • MR Jul-19#25  for its six, 5 MW en-
gines, its DP3 with variable-speed drive)
    July 2019 - Maritime Reporter and Engineering News page: 25

    visited Haugesund, the 18,000 GT North Sea Giant was doing sea trials with EBLs installed after un- dergoing a retro? t for its six, 5 MW en- gines, its DP3 with variable-speed drive and three hybridizing systems onboard that can deliver full ship power on one engine, if needed. Like an offshore wind-turbine

  • MN Jul-19#50 . The 
Thruster) and the ICON DP (dynamic positioning) sys-)
    July 2019 - Marine News page: 50

    engines running dur- electric podded thruster from the Netherlands (Blue ing loitering and periods of reduced power demand. The Thruster) and the ICON DP (dynamic positioning) sys- engines are running at relatively high load, ef? ciently, and tem from Rolls Royce. The electric podded thrusters will

  • MR Jun-19#38 . to be under 10 years old with DP 2 to 
lion each. Subsea)
    June 2019 - Maritime Reporter and Engineering News page: 38

    80 MT, while both need Navigation of Singapore for $6 mil- from the yards ready to go? Chinese yards at attractive prices. to be under 10 years old with DP 2 to lion each. Subsea 7 purchased the However, not to be outdone, Borr be competitive. SALE & PURCHASE Toisa Pegasus Dive Support Vessel emerged