• 2018 August 10 13:32

    Port of Antwerp introduces innovative autonomous sounding boat with unique technology

    A smart port thanks to innovative technology: that's what the port of Antwerp is fast becoming, the company announces in its press release. Now a new milestone has been reached with the introduction of a fully automatic sounding boat that employs unique technology. The vessel, named the Echodrone, is a prototype that is currently being developed to supplement the other operational sounding boat, the Echo. Both of these carry out measurements of the water depth everywhere in the port so as to guarantee safe passage for shipping. The cloud-based technology – a first – has been developed in partnership between the Port Authority and dotOcean and is only one of the many initiatives being taken by the Port Authority in the field of digital innovation.

    Innovation is a powerful response to today's fast-changing world and so is a main component of the future vision of Antwerp Port Authority. In collaboration with the port community the Port Authority is constantly working to develop new technologies and methods and to incorporate them in its operations. "As a world-class player we as a port aim to be a leader in developing innovative concepts," explains Piet Opstaele, Innovation Enablement Manager at Antwerp Port Authority. "In this way we are laying the foundations for the 'smart port' of the future in which digital technologies are used to make the land-based and water-based operations more flexible, responsive and efficient."

    One of the Port Authority's responsibilities is inspection and maintenance of the maritime infrastructure, including the beds of the docks. Regular measurements of the water depths at the berths and at all other points are carried out, both to ensure safe passage and mooring for ships and to plan the necessary maintenance dredging work. So far this has been done using the Echo sounding boat, but now an innovative autonomous sister boat has been developed in collaboration with dotOcean in order to help with the work. The new vessel, named the Echodrone, is smaller than the Echo and is fully autonomous, operating on its own without anyone on board. This makes it more nimble and flexible so that it can even operate in heavy shipping traffic where the Echo would be unable to go.

    Wim Defevere, Senior technical manager nautical access of the Antwerp Port Authority: ”The Echodrone is currently undergoing extensive trials. Once these have been completed it will be based in the Deurganck dock where it will be fully operational alongside the Echo to measure the water depth of the available berths at the busiest of the tidal quays for handling containers.”

    Unique technology for guiding and operating the Echodrone has been developed in collaboration with dotOcean, a maritime technology company based in Brugge, Belgium. "This technology is based on assembling detailed information in the cloud," explains dotOcean co-founder Koen Geirnaert. "Data from all sorts of devices throughout the port is made available over the internet and then selectively compiled and translated into useful information by algorithms in the cloud. The Echodrone is designed to navigate fully independently using this verified data, unlike the previous generation of automatic vessels that had to rely on their own onboard sensors. This makes the Echodrone one of the first of a completely new generation of robots."

    Piet Opstaele adds: "With the help of the Echodrone it will be possible in future to carry out other types of measurements, such as environmental surveys, inspecting quay walls and so on. This technology is a real breakthrough for us in our quest for smart solutions for the port of the future. It is also a good example of our role as an initiator and facilitator of innovative initiatives."     
           
    Members of the public will be able to see the Echodrone at work at the Supernova technology fair being held on Thursday 27/9, Friday 28/9, Saturday 29/9 and Sunday 30/9, from 10 a.m. to sunset every day in the Bonaparte Dock.




2018 October 21

08:54 20,000 TEU COSCO SHIPPING Sagittarius named in Shanghai
08:50 CFO Paul Smits leaves the Port of Rotterdam Authority
07:52 COSCO SHIPPING starts shipment of Toyota exhibits

2018 October 20

08:47 Boskalis, Van Hattum en Blankevoort and Mobilis construct deep-sea quay for the new HES Hartel Tank Terminal at Maasvlakte
08:10 Navios Partners announce filing of F - 1 for direct listing of Navios Containers
08:06 Maersk Line increases FAK rates for Northern Europe to Middle East and ISC trade
08:04 U.S. Navy contracts Austal to order materials for EPF 13
07:44 EU Commission launches the European Network of U-space Demonstrators

2018 October 19

18:42 ABN AMRO, Samsung SDS and the Port of Rotterdam Authority launch container logistics blockchain pilot
18:07 Stena Line's battery hybrid vessel completes its first month of operation
17:56 ABN AMRO, Samsung SDS and Port of Rotterdam Authority launch container logistics blockchain pilot
17:35 Port of Gdansk participated in the CILF 2018 fair in China
17:11 Gdansk pays a visit to Singapore
16:57 Testbed established for Internet of Ships Open Platform
16:48 Finland’s Water Transport Act aims to improve safety and increases preparedness for the future
16:26 World’s largest LNG bunker supply vessel “Kairos” started its voyage to Europe
16:04 KN will motivate its employees with the company's shares
15:42 New Falck training centre on the Maasvlakte officially openes
15:20 Seimas members visiting Klaipėda discussed benefits provided by LNG terminal
14:59 Ukraine plans dredging of 16.33 million cbm of material in 2019
14:37 UN agencies delivering on maritime security
14:15 Hapag-Lloyd starts new Red Sea service
14:00 Atomflot: shipments from Arctic LNG and Yamal LNG to be assisted by diesel and gas powered icebreakers
13:31 MOL's newbuilt LNG carrier "MARVEL EAGLE" to transport LNG from Cameron project in U.S.
13:11 NIBULON Shipbuilding and Repair Yard launches POSS-115 Project tug
13:05 BigLift Barentsz sails Northern Sea route for Pioneering Spirit
12:48 Glavgosexpertiza approves reconstruction of KSK grain terminal to increase its capacity to 4 million tonnes
12:22 Q&A with ImageSat International released ahead of SMi’s 4th annual Maritime Reconnaissance and Surveillance Technology conference
12:05 FESCO wins tender for supplying Indian Research Stations in Antarctica in 2019
11:43 Competition for designing and construction of LNG-powered icebreaker to be announced in late 2018 - early 2019
11:20 North Sea Giant turns to The Switch EBL technology
10:54 NOVATEK to place four FLNG facilities on the Northern Sea Route
10:31 RF Navy’s major amphibious ship Ivan Gren enters North Sea
10:07 Port of Vancouver closes 2018 cruise season
09:56 Brent Crude futures price up 0.4% to $79.61, Light Sweet Crude – up 0.35% to $68.89
09:38 Tackling maritime emissions - IMO rolls out ship and port toolkits
09:29 Expert forecasts more favorable ice situation on Northern Sea Route for 30 years ahead
09:15 Baltic Dry Index is up to 1,565 points
09:07 Hapag-Lloyd, CMA-CGM and COSCO enhance GEM service - covering Mediterranean with the Middle East / ISC
08:37 Samskip launches Netherlands-Italy multimodal rail service
08:07 SEA\LNG submits open comment on the draft supplemental environmental impact statement for Puget Sound LNG facility
07:20 Van Oord awarded offshore contract for the West White Rose Project

2018 October 18

18:03 VSDV opens new crossdock location in the port of Amsterdam
17:33 The first vessel in Klaveness Combination Carriers next generation of combination carriers named at New Yangzi Shipyard in China
17:17 Cargo transportation via Northern Sea Route can reach 17 million tonnes in 2018
17:03 Savannah container trade up 12 percent in September 2018
16:55 PGRK: sales strategy of Pavlovskoye deposit project is focused on foreign markets
16:33 SITC Logistics Group signs strategic cooperation agreement with Chengdu Port Investment Group and Guangzhou Port Logistics Group
16:03 NYK and Horiba to develop a new sulfur-in-oil analyzer for ships
15:34 Thames freight volume rises by 40% as Thames Vision strategy starts to bear fruit
15:33 Port of Rotterdam Authority and research institute TNO present results of the study at IMO meeting
15:31 Dublin Port volumes grow by 4.7% in first nine months. By year end, 36% growth in just six years
15:03 Chinese Lingang group invests 85 million euros in Zeebrugge inner port
14:47 Practical aspects of LNG bunkering to be discussed at the dedicated conference in Moscow on October 24
14:33 Nouryon, Tata Steel, and Port of Amsterdam partner to develop the largest green hydrogen cluster in Europe
14:24 Bunker prices may change irregular next week amid rising volatility on global fuel market, expert says
14:11 Tallink and Rauma marine constructions sign letter of intent for the construction of new shuttle ferry
14:02 VesselMan and DNV GL team up to offer optimized solution for dry-docking management
13:30 Project Forward paves the way for meeting IMO’s reduction on CO2 emissions
13:14 Equinor’s share saving plan allocates shares