Europort - November 7-10 2023, Rotterdam Ahoy-News & Media

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Breeding ground for maritime innovations

Breeding ground for maritime innovations

09 November 2021
Breeding ground for maritime innovations

Somewhat hidden in the corner of hall 4, it was quite busy at Europort for 4 days. No fewer than 18 start-ups - no older than 5 years - share space in the Rising Stars Pavilion. It turns out to be a true breeding ground for maritime innovations.

The Rising Stars Pavilion is an initiative of Europort and Marpro, the Danish maritime recruitment and consultancy firm with a Rotterdam office. "Together they decided to do something extra for promising start-up companies”, Narjiss Ghayour, marketing manager at Marpro explains. "For start-ups it’s very difficult to present themselves at trade fairs like Europort, because they don’t have sufficient marketing budgets. Together we selected 18 companies that were not older than 5 years, and have a solution that is smart, sustainable and ambitious.”

And those 18 companies all turn out to have come up with promising solutions. Solutions that they could not show to a large audience - partly due to corona. They therefore make grateful use of the corner in hall 4.

SearchMaster
One of the start-ups in the Rising Stars Pavillion is SearchMaster Intelligent Searchlight, an intelligent searchlight, perfect for freeing crew members on vessels and for search and rescue operations at sea, with a 180W LED Panel with adjustable focus and pitch / roll stabilization. On vessels the SearchMaster can be set to track a specific location or a target, freeing the crewmember that would be controlling the searchlight during operations. The SearchMaster is also perfect for tracking other vessels, objects or a PAB / SART signal, by using the AIS data combined with GPS, Compass and Radar information. And the SearchMaster is capable of tracking on a heading, which means that the searchlight will automatically maintain a heading when your vessel is moving.

Reducing container loss
Just two booths to the left a tiny solution with great impact is presented by Joris Brouwer and his colleague Michiel Gunsiing. Both worked at Marin and together they founded GBMS. With GBMS they offer a SaaS warning system, monitoring the loads in container stacks. This secures safe shipping, and reduces loss of containers. "We will apply our thorough understanding of ship motions, physics, software development and sensor technology to develop warning systems”, Brouwers explains. "And unlike other systems, our warning system informs the crew in an early stage of potential unsafe behaviour of container stacks”, Gunsing adds. "With our sensor and the images that are projected on a screen on the bridge, a captain can decide at an early stage to change his course. For example in a storm. That can indeed mean that he arrives too late at his destination, but with all containers still on board.”

Blue Atlas Robotics
Another two booths further, just on the corner of the pavilion, stand Mads Andersen, CEO at Blue Atlas Robotics. He presents an underwater robot with autopilot and multi-camera system that gives shipowners a new way of seeing their assets. "Our BAR15’s autonomous robotic 6-camera system speedily scans large areas”, Andersen says. "A surface area of 100M2 takes approximately only 7 minutes to inspect and the imagery is gapless and consistent so nothing is missed.”  With  the underwater robot an Interactive digital twin is easily produced. Andersen: "Thousands of images are being processed into a detailed and interactive point cloud model that provides a quick overview method of large areas with advanced functionality. It’s Easy to pinpoint and investigate particular small details identified via the model.”

Andersen is enthusiastic about the Rising Stars Pavillion. "We could never have been here on our own. And in the past four days, I've met more potential clients than ever. Shipowners and shipbuilders are all impressed by our robot. So Europort is definitely a success for us.”

Always on board
Dutch start-up Diize claims to reduce and simplify the Port Call Administration with their 'Always on board’-software. Gerben Beekman, Manager Sales & BD, says their solution handles port call administration in less than 20 minutes. "So the captain can focus on what really matters: safe navigation instead of administration. On board the administrative duties are significant and still rising due to the increasing regulations. Based on our maritime and digital expertise, we have built an easy-to-use port call administration solution for captains. One that meets industry standards like low bandwidth functionality and use of the latest local port documentation.”

Beekman explains that 'Always on board’ is available in more than 25 countries and over 3.300 seaports worldwide. "New ports will be enabled every two weeks. Every captain can request new ports. Soon all top 500 ports worldwide will be available.”