NAVTOR has joined forces with Weathernews Inc. (WNI), the world’s largest private weather service company, to integrate Optimum Ship Routing (OSR) and advanced weather services into digital chart table NavStation. The move streamlines and simplifies tasks for navigators, while creating time and cost savings for shipping businesses, combining all planning and routing processes on a single, cyber secure platform.
NavStation 5.3 is the latest incarnation of a solution that, when it launched in 2014, marked a major breakthrough on the bridge.
Hailed as the world’s first digital chart table, NavStation collects all the information navigators need for optimal decision making and passage planning in one place. ENCs sit at the core of the solution, with further data (such as Admiralty Digital Publications, Admiralty Electronic Nautical Publications, NavArea warnings, environmental regulations, security alerts, and much more) ‘layered’ over the charts for total operational awareness. The WNI input, essentially a digital version of the Japanese company’s Captain Dosca (DOSCA DX), creates a new, innovative and valuable layer.
“We’ve been working with WNI since 2017,” explains Tor Svanes, the CEO of the Norwegian-headquartered global e-Navigation leader. “They are a true industry powerhouse, providing weather data and route optimisation solutions to around 10,000 vessels globally, and we saw an opportunity to deliver compelling user benefits by integrating Captain Dosca’s functionality within NavStation.”
“By doing so we create a single platform – one comprehensive vessel planning station – for optimal safety, efficiency, compliance and environmental performance, cutting fuel consumption while saving shipowner opex. The result is a strong competitive advantage for our customers. We believe this collaboration is a win-win for everyone and look forward to building our relationship and enabling smarter, more cost effective and sustainable shipping far into the future,” Svanes adds.
NavStation 5.3 takes navigators from berth to berth, with no need to piece together routes and collect data from different sources. One seamless procedure, with automated processes including passage planning (slashing administration time), transforms tasks – ensuring less room for human errors, enhanced quality control, and better security (with no USB stick data sharing between machines).
In addition, having OSR within NavStation and NAVTOR’s connected e-Navigation ecosystem allows for greater data sharing between vessels, fleets and onshore management teams. This means companies can now monitor optimum routes, assess fuel savings and implement improvements business-wide based on greater data insight.
“We are so excited to finally reveal our new onboard weather and routing solution,” comments WNI Executive Officer Hidenori Iwasa. “The launch of DOSCA DX, integrated into the new NavStation 5.3, is the first step we are taking with NAVTOR towards complete synergic e-Navigation solutions to help optimise safety, efficiency, and, most importantly, to support our customers with the need for greener shipping.”
He continues, “Without question, this is our most important development to date; a state-of-the-art solution tool, combining WNI’s high-quality weather data and best-in-class ship routing visualisation and optimisation with NAVTOR’s leading e-navigation solutions in a seamless user experience.”
Captain Dosca was originally launched to the maritime industry a decade ago. OSR has been central to its success, allowing users to feed planned routes to an onshore function that optimises them in accordance with the very latest, detailed and trusted weather data. NavStation, meanwhile, has surged in popularity in recent years, in part due to the Passage Planning module, which cuts the average admin time per voyage, per vessel from over three hours to around just 30 minutes.
All data required for the solution is shared between vessels and land via the NAVTOR NavBox. This innovative “black box”, with no screen, keyboard or mouse, automates the encrypted distribution and update of digital charts, publications and other navigational data. NavBox has achieved “cyber secure” certification (IEC 61162-460 Gateway) from DNV GL.