DanelecConnect Partner focus: nauticAi
nauticAi has chosen a technology agnostic approach to help move its ship owner and operator customers into the digital age.
There’s a refreshing approach to supplier selection and industry cooperation at nauticAi. The Finnish maritime IT-startup specialises in affordable operational awareness solutions and values agility and cooperation when choosing new hardware, software and data provider partners.
“In general, we advise our customers to think about digitalisation as a modular system,” explained Henrik Ramm-Schmidt, nauticAi’s founder and CEO. “This means favoring specialist modules for specific tasks and collaborating with diverse providers instead of depending on mainstream ERP systems to solve, or not as it is often the case, vessel and fleet operational problems.”
Recognising the potential to acquire dependable IoT-data without the need to install or manage on board hardware directly, nauticAi’s vendor neutral mindset led to it signing up as a DanelecConnect partner in 2019.
Through DanelecConnect infrastructure and the Danelec Vessel Remote Server (VRS), nauticAi can integrate data from VDRs within its innovative Bridge Operations Quality Assurance (BOQA) technology, which also combines data from various other sources including weather forecasts, engines and navigation systems.
The service is called the Danelec-BOQA and is currently being used to monitor operational quality systematically and automatically on board 20 vessels globally. The combination of diverse data makes it easy to find anomalies and detect unwanted behavior such as close encounters, route deviations, heavy weather on route and much more.
“Supported by an established global partner network, the Danelec VRS is a good option for setting up an IoT gateway wherever in the world your ships happen to be,” said Henrik. “Further, DanelecConnect and its API are a standardised way of ingesting vessel data into our BOQA platform, enabling us to provide more value, and operational insight to the end-user.”
BOQA is a methodology adopted from the aviation industry. The basic idea is to use sensor and external data to analyse human operational quality and deviations from normal behaviour. It has become an essential aspect of the digitalisation of all aspects of aviation which has unlocked countless benefits that stakeholders in shipping are trying to mirror.
“In our view digitalisation is a combination of switching from paper based or traditional email- and spreadsheet-based work processes to digital web-based and database-driven systems, but like the aviation sector, setting up automated vessel data collection and monitoring using IoT technologies is essential to improving operational quality,” said Henrik.
As part of the Danelec-BOQA system, data from VDRs, including position, heading, speed, water depth, shaft RPM, fuel flow, generator power, rudder angles, wind speed, door- and ramp-signals, and system alarms, is applied to enable unified fleet tracking, event monitoring, charter party compliance and performance analysis.
It is sent to nauticAi using the Danelec VRS, a cost-effective and robust IoT gateway that can operate on any communications channel. With low-cost and practically plug and play installation, it contributes to nauticAi’s commitment to making digitalisation more affordable so that more vessels can take advantage of it.
“We achieve affordability by utilizing web-technologies, keeping our own organization very slim and effective and generally concentrating on doing productive work instead of sitting in internal strategy meetings. We also choose partners like Danelec that offer exceptional value and boost this further by using lots of Open Source data to lower costs further,” added Henrik.
DanelecConnect and the VRS contribute to the affordability nauticAi is providing for ship owners and operators looking to get started on their digitalisation journey. The modular approach of BOQA can in fact offer the lowest fiscal impact of any digital platform in the beginning, according to Henrik.
“One of the strongest features is that you can use our system for your whole fleet from day one, since we can also work with external AIS-data that requires no hardware onboard, and then gradually extend with IoT data at you own pace,” he concludes.