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OPERATIONAL REVIEWWEATHER FORECASTING


London P&I Club warning


London P&I Club has joined forces with London Offshore Consultants (LOC) to publish ‘Is your ECDIS contributing to safe navigation or introducing risk?’ The guide was produced after an increase in negative findings during ship inspections, which the club said is attributable to the way the introduction of electronic chart display and information systems (ECDIS) is being managed. Failings include a lack of ECDIS content in the watch handover checklist; a lack of familiarity among bridge watch-keeping officers; a failure to revise the safety management system to include ECDIS; among other factors.


the most important part of the future I see,” said Weber. The International Maritime


Organization’s data collection system (IMO DCS) for fuel oil consumption of ships, coupled with EU regulations on monitoring, reporting and verification of fuel consumption (EU MRV), have forced the industry to think more about recording and reporting emissions. In response to increasing demands for


energy-efficient shipping and the upcoming IMO Sulphur 2020 regulations, StormGeo plans to focus its efforts on giving operators the tools they need to improve vessel performance.


Fuel decision “When it comes to Sulphur 2020, some owners do not yet know what they are going to do. Should they install scrubbers or buy expensive fuel? It is difficult because you have to make a huge investment into the ship, some of which are older, so the pay-off is unknown,” advised Weber. “It is even more important to consider


the impact that weather has on fuel consumption if a ship is operating in an environment with higher fuel prices than today. On occasion, routing a vessel to avoid bad weather is more about safety than cost efficiency. Sometimes the safe option may not be the most efficient,” he added. Weber would like to see the industry


adopt a committed approach to energy efficiency. “A shipowner can do a lot to improve the efficiency, but it needs the crew to support it and act accordingly. There is no sense, if you have all tools onboard for trim optimisation or planning for example, if no one is using them correctly,” he pointed out. Operational efficiency is also about much


more than compliance with a charter party. The charterer may, for instance, have another measurement or scorecard system based on performance. If a vessel’s score is low, then this could have an impact on the shipowner. “The operator may say it is not chartering


from this company again because it is not satisfied with the performance of the crew. This, the human factor, is very important


98 January/February 2019


The owner or operator needs to have the tools to evaluate the performance of the crew. This is the most important part of the future I see. – Dr Thomas Weber, StormGeo


and has a huge impact on vessel efficiency,” he said. Weber also emphasised the importance of


not relying solely on computers and software, and urged the industry to be cautious when it comes to assuming data is right. “You should not sail a vessel just by looking on the radar or on any computer; you need to look outside and make a decision based on what you can see.” Shipowner and management company


Briese Schiffahrts has selected Globecomm Maritime’s Ku-band VSAT services to ensure its owned and managed fleet of around 132 ships is connected to shore 24/7. Holger Börchers, IT manager at Briese Schiffahrts, said that the relationship it holds with Globecomm goes back 16 years and has been integral to its crew communications strategy. Globecomm VSAT’s high-capacity


end-to-end service integrates shipboard hardware and monitoring tools to provide maximum service performance and the


broadest coverage. Börchers said this communications strategy developed from a company meeting that discussed the challenge of attracting and retaining good crew. “Nowadays you hear this story widely,


but back then there was less recognition that it was about more than just the salary; we had to improve crew welfare by keeping them in touch with their friends and families,” said Börchers.


Upgrade features Briese’s upgraded vessels will feature a combination of a Sailor 900 VSAT terminal, one or more Iridium OpenPort L-Band systems as a backup, and the Globecomm Nimbus network management smartbox. The smartbox has prepaid crew access


and allows crewmembers to connect their own personal devices via selected wireless access points. Using Nimbus means that new PCs can be preconfigured and delivered ready for use. The systems are also being used to improve vessel performance. In association with Globecomm’s


development team, Briese has developed a system for automatically and securely updating


www.heavyliftpfi.com


MeteoGroup’s Ship Performance Optimization System (SPOS9) featured in an episode of the Discovery Channel’s Mighty Ships series, which followed Jumbo’s heavy lift vessel Fairplay transporting oil refinery equipment across the Mediterranean and the Atlantic.


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