News Letter

Majority of world’s ports still don’t use digital tech

The majority of the world’s 4,900 ports are not yet using digital technology for even the most basic processes, Innovez One, a Singapore-based provider of smart-tech and AI solutions for the maritime sector, said. As explained, 80 per cent of ports continue to rely on manual, legacy solutions such as whiteboards or spreadsheets to manage critical marine services such as towage, pilotage and launch boats. This leaves many ports commercially vulnerable and less able to compete in an increasingly digital world. While the phrase ‘smart ports’ has been used regularly within the maritime industry for a number of years, the benefits of digitalisation remain the preserve of only a few, large ‘Tier 1’ ports that have the profile and financial muscle. This has created a polarised landscape within the port sector, according to the tech company. “The current dynamic reflects the often-messy reality of port operations, which is a blend of high-tech digital and paper-based, manual processes sitting side-by-side,” David Yeo, CEO, Innovez-One, commented. “This causes issues in relation to interoperability, where systems are not talking to each other properly, which is impeding effective execution. However, it also highlights the fact that while global supply chains are becoming increasingly automated, of which ports are an integral part, the majority of ports still overwhelmingly rely on person-to-person systems.”


NGO Shipbreaking calls on EU to investigate fatalities at Turkish recycling yards

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NGO Shipbreaking Platform is calling on the European Union to investigate incidents that claimed two lives at Turkish ship recycling yards that are included in the EU List of approved ship recycling facilities. According to the NGO, on 3 October 2020, a worker lost his life during the scrapping of two Transocean offshore rigs at Isiksan yard. A handrail broke and fell, hitting the worker at the back of his neck. Furthermore, on 4 February, another worker died when hit by a steel block which he was torch-cutting in the secondary cutting area of Simsekler yard, where a Carnival Corporation’s cruise vessel is currently being recycled. As informed, both yards were quick to immediately involve the concerned authorities. “These tragic fatal accidents are a sad reminder that ship recycling is a heavy and hazardous industry that exposes workers to several safety risks. We are closely following the investigations of the yards, as well as those of Turkish authorities, and expect that full transparency is maintained,” says Ingvild Jenssen, Director and Founder of the NGO Shipbreaking Platform.


Hapag-Lloyd secures green financing for six LNG-powered newbuilds

German liner company Hapag-Lloyd has concluded two green financial deals worth a total of $889 million. The financing will be used for six ultra-large 23,500 TEU container ships, which were ordered in December 2020. The company said that the two deals include debut transactions according to the Green Loan Principles of the Loan Market Association (LMA). The syndicated green loan worth $417 million has a 12-year maturity and will be used to finance three of the six container ships on order. “Our first green financings are a major milestone for us, as we are breaking new ground in the container shipping segment by financing newbuilding projects geared towards sustainability. The transactions will help us to modernise our fleet while further reducing our CO2 footprint at the same time,” said Mark Frese, Chief Financial Officer of Hapag-Lloyd.


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Kongsberg Maritime chooses Sonihull antifouling systems

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Sonihull, the UK-based provider of environmentally friendly anti-fouling systems, has signed an agreement with Norwegian maritime technology group Kongsberg Maritime to be its sole-supplier of ultrasonic antifouling systems. “This agreement is a significant achievement in the current climate,” Darren A. Rowlands, CEO of Sonihull, said. “As the maritime industry faces the challenges of a low carbon future, we are developing zero-harm anti-fouling systems to meet the environmental and economic challenges caused by bio-fouling,” Rowlands added. He explained that Sonihull systems can improve long-term fuel economy by up to 20% in waterjet and propeller applications. In other applications, such as box cooler installations, the systems can reduce capital and MRO costs by up to 95%.


Electric hybrid power & propulsion system for UVM’s new vessel to be supplied by BAE Systems

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BAE Systems, a British arms, security, and aerospace company, has been selected by naval architectural consultancy Chartwell Marine to supply the electric hybrid power and propulsion system for a new maritime research vessel for the University of Vermont (UVM). As part of the contract, BAE Systems will supply and integrate the hybrid system, working with the vessel’s builder, Derecktor Shipyard. As explained, BAE Systems’ HybriGen Power and Propulsion system will help reduce both carbon emissions and the use of fuel by the vessel, which will serve as a floating classroom and lab for students of the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources conducting research on Lake Champlain. “Using green energy to power transportation in the water is an essential part of establishing cleaner waterways and harbors in places where we live, work, and visit,” Steve Trichka, vice president and general manager of Power & Propulsion Solutions at BAE Systems, commented.