ClassNK and Bureau Veritas (BV) have introduced technologies that enable shipping companies to reduce the cost of class surveys and improve cyber security
BV has opened a remote survey centre in its north European head office in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, for remotely inspecting vessels through live streaming and smart devices.
BV senior vice president for technical and operations Laurent Leblanc said this marine operations centre will have a positive effect on vessel classification. “This is a new and important milestone in our global strategy of digital classification,” he said. “Using digital technologies transforms the operating model of classification for the benefits of its clients.”
“This remote capability is really just starting to make an impact on our clients. It is a vital development for the future of classification.”
BV has completed a full programme of tests and proof of concepts confirming relevant technologies are now mature enough to enable remote surveys. These enabling technologies include optimised live-streaming solutions, connected devices and connectivity on ships and to the operations centre.
Smart devices include smart phones, tablets, Go-Pro cameras, smart glasses and augmented reality. Connectivity is provided by mobile phone networks of 4G and soon 5G.
BV tested different operating modes during development trials: operating offline, partly online, and fully online.
An onboard client uses connected devices to display the ship’s condition in real time to a remote surveyor. This enables closure of a survey in real time, saving the time and money for transferring a class surveyor to the ship.
BV vice president for north Europe Herman Spilker said development work was started in 2012. “We are able to offer a comprehensive range of survey items which can be performed remotely,” he said. “Applicable survey items include classification surveys and specific statutory items which can be agreed by flag administrations.”
He said there were multiple benefits to shipping companies. These include “speed of response and no travel or waiting time; optimisation in the decision-making process thanks to live-streaming solutions; continuous improvement in the quality of service; and cost control through overall reductions in travel time and arrangements.”
BV’s remote centre will carry out a combination of remote surveys with close proximity inspections and plan approvals.
ClassNK has introduced cyber security training to assist owners preparing for the introduction of IMO’s changes to international shipmanagement rules in January 2021.
Its Consulting Service Co (NKCS) has started providing e-learning in Japanese and English for seafarers and office managers. This was developed in co-operation with KDDI Corp and KDDI DigitalSecurity Inc.
NKCS’s program supports and provides a certificate of completion after a comprehension test. This certificate can be used for an education record on a cyber security management system.
It is certified by ClassNK in compliance with the Guidelines on Cyber Security Onboard Ships Version 3, produced and supported by BIMCO.
The course can be completed anywhere and anytime via smart devices and computers.
Digital classification technologies will be discussed during Riviera Maritime Media’s Optimised Ship Forum in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, on 18 May 2020