Norway-based NAVTOR has signed a collaboration agreement with Weathernews, which will see NAVTOR improve the weather data available within its route planning software NavStation while the companies also begin work on development of a new artificial intelligence (AI) routing service.
The agreement will initially see Weathernews providing better resolution weather data for NAVTOR to use within its system, including the addition of new types of information covering areas such as tropical cyclones and weather fronts.
This will later be followed by the integration of the Weathernews Shipping Weather Service Fleet Management platform into NavStation, including functionality such as Optimum Ship Routing, to save fuel and optimise for route safety and speed, as well as Fleet Monitoring, which offers daily analysis of specific ship efficiency parameters.
“This is another significant step on our journey to offer a fully integrated navigation solution that delivers everything navigators, ship officers and shore-based staff need on a single, intuitive and powerful platform,” said NAVTOR CEO Tor Svanes.
“Weather can make all the difference between profit and loss for shipowners and operators. With WNI’s expertise we can ensure we deliver the best, most comprehensive data available, allowing navigators to minimise risks and plan the safest, most cost effective and optimal routes for their individual vessels.”
“This, along with other recent improvements to NavStation – such as the addition of our Passage Planning module – makes the platform an essential tool for enhanced decision making, with the minimum of fuss, administration and risk of human error.”
Details of the proposed AI project have not been released, though the companies have confirmed that it will include the creation of a software tool that leverages the data created within the companies’ respective systems to offer real-time decision support.
“Data is the most valuable ingredient for AI,” said Mr Svanes, “and NAVTOR and WNI have access to enormous amounts of it from thousands of vessels operating today. It is our intention to develop a solution that learns to perceive its environment and recommend optimal actions.”
“By doing so we will be able to support our customers with a service capable of maximising performance, efficiency and safety at all times, even when conditions are rapidly changing en route. This will be a breakthrough development for the entire industry, paving the way for a more sustainable, predictable and cost-efficient future.”
NAVTOR is planning an initial unveiling of the prototype of the Weathernews-integrated NavStation at the Sea Japan exhibition in Tokyo, with the official release scheduled for June this year. Details of the on-going AI development project will be released at a later stage.