Human behaviour: the final frontier in efficiency and operational performance management

(Photo by Ibrahim Boran on Unsplash) In recent decades, every industry has tested different strategies and technologies to maximize operational efficiency. Mechanical and software-based solutions have pushed the boundaries of human possibility by making equipment, machinery, and engines not only tremendously efficient but also extremely safe. The arrival of machine learning and artificial intelligence has taken efficiency to a whole new level. Software platforms can now sugge

What will digitalisation of bulk shipping look like? (Part 2)

How can bulk shipping digitalise, what are the main points? Digitalisation of bulk shipping commences at the interface between the shipowner and the charterer. This is where business transpires. It has been noticed in other industries that there is accelerated adoption of digitalisation when there is commercial incentive to do so or when it is a question of survival. It is no different in the bulk cargo sector. The tipping point may perhaps be apparent when there is a solutio

What will digitalisation of bulk shipping look like? (Part 1)

Digitalisation is a hot discussion topic of today, and what’s on everyone’s lips, is how will it impact shipping? Digital developments will provide opportunities and benefits but the industry-wide digital transition will take time. Here is an attempt at answering a few common questions: In general what are the biggest challenges in the bulk segment currently? The bulk segment was navigating its way out of the doldrums towards the end of 2018 with positive cash flows. The reco

A $1 billion problem that needs solving

We are all familiar with phones & the connectivity it has given us. The analogue rotary phones were cabled, but the modern cell phones are wireless & allows us to do more, in fact much more than what the landline allowed. It took over 130 years to get about 1.25 billion landline phones installed. However, by the end of 2019 in just about 12 years from its inception, it is estimated that there will be 5 billion smart phone subscriptions. It demonstrates the ‘power to scale’ wi

Disruption of the Greek business model

Recession in shipping is blamed partly on oversupply of vessels. When you look at number and tonnage of existing ships and the new-build orders, one finds Greek owners are front runners in both areas. But then one wonders why they want to add to the glut with new-builds when they already own so much floating tonnage. The Greeks have historically been adept at riding the shipping market cycles. Their traditional business sweet spot has arguably not been maritime transportation

Mobile transparency: the key enabler for predictive analytics

In a previous blog, I had discussed the evolution of data and communication in the marine industry and how predictive analytics is the next big thing. By presenting possible near-future scenarios like upcoming bad weather, a sudden decrease in engine efficiency, or a more fuel-efficient route, predictive analytics means your key personnel can make more informed decisions to improve safety and efficiency. However, the best information is of little use if it is not viewed by th

Predictive analytics and disruption in business

Information is vital for business. Relevant information received at the right time has always given a competitive advantage. It is interesting to see how information in the shipping industry has evolved over time – the most vital pieces of information have not significantly changed for centuries. This information includes: How much cargo can the ship carry? When will the ship arrive at the port? How much time is required to load the cargo? When will the ship depart from the p

Going Digital: from "Complexity to Simplicity"

LNG ships are specialized modes of transportation of natural gas as cargo, which by its very delicate nature of being carried in cryogenic liquid form, dictates efficient and safe cargo management on-board. LNG cargo, due to its volatility and special nature, is affected greatly by temperature and movement, causing continuous boil-off. This means the boil-off needs to be continuously dealt with on-board. Traditionally it has been burnt off in the main boiler used for propulsi

Using vessel data to achieve the UN sustainable development goals (SDG)

The UN in 2015 with an aim to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all, unanimously adopted the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) also known as ‘Global Goals’. Under the SDG, Goal 14 states: “Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources”. The goal has a specific target to be achieved over 15 years, wherein everyone needs to do their part, i.e., governments, private sector, civil society and ordinary people. With over 3 billion peop

What? Measuring "Real-time Boil-off"?

With sensor information on board LNG vessels and enrichment using the laws of physics and mathematics, companies have developed the technology to precisely ascertain the real time rate of boil-off on an LNG vessel at any instant and in any situation that the vessel finds itself. The LNG rate of boil-off is not an unknown entity as such, as it can be calculated in test conditions in a laboratory. This has however not until recently been attempted on board in a scientific manne

Affordable care for shipping – “Yes we care”

Affordable Care Act (ACA) was brought in to increase overall healthcare and expand medical coverage for all. Under the act signed on 23rd March 2010, hospitals and primary healthcare centres would transform financially, technologically, and clinically to drive better health outcomes, lower costs, and improve their methods of distribution and accessibility. When you look at relative parallels in the shipping industry, you will realise you don’t need to look far. We sat down a