The recent news that IMO and its Facilitation Committee made great progress in digitalization of shipping is in line with other developments in the area. The commercial drive is in no way behind that of the authorities. The digitalization of shipping was a main theme in the conferences and seminars at the Singapore Maritime Week 2016. Cyber security, smart shipping and sustainable shipping all highlighted the role of digitalization as key to increase competitiveness and sustainability. This included big data, automation, computer monitoring, remote services and autonomous ships. The Maritime Sustainability Forum was one of the events where these issues were discussed. Program and presentations are available
The picture shows the presenters and panel chair of the Maritime Sustainability Forum 2016. The forum was arranged by the Maritime and Port Authorities (MPA), the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Singapore and Innovation Norway. From left to right: James Forsdyke - Lloyds Register, Andrew Yue - ST Electronics, Toshio Kurashiki - ClassNK, Esben Poulsson - Singapore Shipping Association (Panel Chair), Steen Lund - DNV GL, Todd Schuett - Kongsberg Norcontrol IT and Ørnulf Jan Rødseth - MARINTEK.
In MARINTEK's presentation, Mr. Rødseth suggested the term Shipping 4.0 to describe the new developments in digitalization of shipping. This to reflect the very similar developments in land based industry which commonly goes under the name of Industry 4.0: The fourth industrial revolution.
The other major developments in ship technology, the introduction of steam engines around 1810, diesel engines around 1910 and digital automation in the 1970's, created the basis for disruptive changes in the shipping business. It is also expected that shipping 4.0 will dramatically change the way the business will be run in the future. Buying power production by the kW, extensive use of third party shore services and remotely controlled as well as unmanned ship are only parts of this picture.