In our webinar – digitalisation and data standardisation: time for the maritime industry to act – panellists discussed how the maritime industry should move forward on the issue of digitalisation and the creation of maritime standards. The message was as united as it was clear: "share, share, share"
The webinar was the first in Riviera Maritime Media’s Vessel Optimisation Webinar Week, part of our ongoing series of webinars.
As vessel operators, OEMs and asset owners recognise, it is in the their best interest to share certain data and it is time to lower the hurdles to sharing data and time to realise the benefits – just as other industries have done.
Thetius founder Nick Chubb, Digital Container Shipping Association chief operating officer Henning Schleyerbach, and P&O Maritime Logistics chief executive officer Martin Helweg presented and debated what works and what does not work in terms of digitalisation and data sharing.
Founder-director of Thetius, a source of research and intelligence on emerging technologies within maritime, Mr Chubb said history has shown that sharing a concept and making patents open source was a proven way to create a market and monetise standards.
“Often there is reticence about coming up with a standard and releasing it for free but history teaches us that in doing so, the payback is tenfold," he said, noting in his closing remarks that the industry must “share, share, share".
Mr Schleyerbach said the aim of the organisation, which has nine out of the top 10 liner companies as members, was to “further the digitalisation of global trade.” He noted that the organisation was not-for-profit and published its data as open source.
Mr Schleyerbach presented two of the projects the association was working on: smart containers and just-in-time port calls. Smart containers are fitted with internet of things devices, which can transmit information about location, cargo temperature, and so on. If 10% of the containers on board are smart, they could inform the ship of an unusual increase in localised temperature, for example alerting operators when a fire began, he said. The just-in-time port call project builds on the common data standard to increase liner service reliability.
“Each port call depends on the previous port call,” Mr Schleyerbach said. “If we have these variables, it directly impacts the customer experience”.
In other words, using the information from the smart containers will enable liner services to meet the number one criteria of their customers – on time arrival of their containers.
Mr Helweg agreed with the other panellists, and said “Today we don’t share data, and that simply has to change. When we look at other industries, they have already understood the intrinsic value in collaboration.”
Mr Helweg cited the way the car industry and telecoms industry now share data instead of the traditional attitude of keeping data protected for internal use only and said P&O Maritime Logistics looks at data as a revenue driver, not a cost.
“We want to be at the forefront of technology adoption,” Mr Helweg said. “I say adoption, not development. This emphasises the need for very strong collaboration and partners. We cannot be experts in all fields of technology, and we don’t want to.”
To encourage wider collaboration throughout the industry, P&O Maritime Logistics has created an open source platform, marinestats.com, to provide a common set of data standards. “The aim is to reduce downtime and fewer failures. Everyone can inspect the data on surveys,” Mr Helweg said. In conclusion, he said, “We need to change the way we do business and sharing data is a critical step."
You can view the webinar, in full, in our webinar library.
And you can sign up to attend one of our many upcoming webinars on our events page.
Question: In terms of the next 24 months, do you regard maritime digitalisation as...
69% = Important and high priority
23% = Important and medium priority
8% = Important but low priority
Question: In the next 12 months will your board of directors...
62% = Maintain the minimum investment
33% = Ramp up investment
5% = Freeze all investment in new technology
Question: Industry will apply new maritime digitalisation standards for newbuildings. Will vessels in service be overlooked?
55% = Agree
45% = Disagree
Question: Of the data captured by sensors on board your vessel what % do you use for later analysis?
33% = 0-19%
26% = 20%
22% = 50 %
11% = 75%
8% = 100%
Panellists: Top left, Thetius founder Nick Chubb. Bottom left, Digital Container Shipping Association chief operating officer Henning Schleyerbach. Top right, P&O Maritime Logistics chief executive officer Martin Helweg