Sea Traffic Management (STM), a concept that connects the maritime world by providing real-time information exchange, and the Port of Rotterdam have carried out electronic exchange of arrival times between ships and port.
300 ships in the STM Validation Project, a project which validates the STM concept, infrastructure, and services by showing the benefits in practice, have electronically shared their voyage plan schedules directly from their ECDIS or navigation systems with the Port of Rotterdam.
The successful exchange of data through an electronic platform indicates the improvements to the quality and predictability of arrival information in port systems and navigation systems on board ships.
Planned arrival times are shared automatically, reducing the need for manual communication. Port authorities then adjust the planned time of arrival and an automatic update is transmitted to the ship and displayed as a text message on board.
According to STM, data exchange and management of sea traffic is more about standardisation than specific solutions. STM’s integration with the Port of Rotterdam re-uses the same standard data formats, APIs and authentication mechanism via the Maritime Connectivity Platform, as many other services in the STM project. Several leading ECDIS and VTS system providers already support these standards in their products, meaning that integration with systems in other ports is straightforward.
“We use the same components again and again; integrating with an existing system is a matter of weeks. We are here to help,” says solution architect Per Löfbom at the Swedish Maritime Administration.
Per Setterberg, operational project manager for the STM Validation Project adds: “The Port of Rotterdam is one of the leaders in digitalisation among European ports and the cooperation is highly valued by the STM project. Many ships in the STM project are calling Rotterdam regularly, and having the biggest port in Europe connected to STM adds to the usefulness for participating ships.”
“For speeding up digitalisation in shipping it is very important that multiple initiatives like STM, the International Taskforce Port Call Optimisation and leading providers of e.g. ECDIS and VTS systems start promoting the same industry standards, “ says Ben van Scherpenzeel, chair of the Taskforce.