At the heart of efficient ship operations: NAVTOR and Weathernews join forces

An e-navigation company from inception, NAVTOR started life as a challenger to traditional navigation methods. Now their freshly signed collaboration agreement with Weathernews of Japan keeps them on course to redefine navigation, moving beyond charts and chores and into the very heart of vessel operations.

Weathernews Inc. (WNI), the world’s largest privately listed weather service company, originates from a background of safeguarding sailors and protecting ships. Utilizing its vast amount of climatology data and the in-depth knowledge of its staff ensures a safe and economic routing of vessels to supports the single most important objective of safety at sea.  

The agreement between NAVTOR and WNI is unique in the e-navigation sphere. NAVTOR will significantly upgrade its weather information offering within the route planning software NavStation, andWNI gets direct access to ENC and passage planning, further improving WNI’s service offering.The combined strength of NAVTOR and WNI enables the development of a ground-breaking artificial intelligence (AI) routing service.  

The new duo will apply their combined wealth of operational and weather data as a platform to create a new software application that transforms data into detailed, reliable and optimised decision-making tools with real-time capabilities. This novel combination has the potential to revolutionise route planning, efficiency and safety in the maritime industry.

This is another significant step on our journey to offer a fully integrated navigation solution that delivers everything navigators, ship officers and shore-based staff need on a single, intuitive and powerful platform,” says NAVTOR CEO Tor Svanes. “Weather can make all the difference between profit and loss for shipowners and operators. With WNI’s expertise we can ensure we deliver the best, most comprehensive weather data available, allowing navigators to minimise risks and plan the safest, most cost effective and optimal routes for their individual vessels. 

NAVTOR introduced NavStation, the world´s first digital chart table, in 2014. Since then the application has undergone significant development, including the introduction of the markets’ most advanced and efficient Passage Planning solution, reducing time used on this essential but tedious task from several hours to just 30 minutes on average.As of spring of 2019, NAVTOR is pleased to presentNavStation 5.0, with a new and further refined passage planner, a MARPOL Manager module, and an e-Publication Reader providing access to other digital publications. 

“The maritime industry is constantly seeking to improve on the quality of service, and at WNI we have realized that to be best in class, partnerships are the most efficient way to support our customers,” says Weathernews CRO and market leader Hidenori Iwasa. “WNI has the experience needed for safe open water routing. Applying ENC and NAVTOR’s expertise in complex navigation adds yet another aspect of navigation to WNI’s platform and services.”  

Now digitally optimised routing can take into account such factors as real-time weather conditions and tidal patterns to deliver significant vessel fuel savings.

Ships, fleets and businesses leveraging e-Navigation can gain complete overviews of vessel movements, chart usage, management and costs, and real-time operational data. The information is gathered and accessed on NAVTOR’s NavTracker fleet management application to give onshore teams a new window to navigational operations. Ships can be compared, expenditures can be controlled, fuel consumption can be optimised and emissions reduced, and decisions can be made to maximize profitable business operations.  

Worsening climate and resulting extreme sea conditions are impacting not only the safety of crew and cargo, but also the business of the world’s shipping companies. “Our collaboration with NAVTOR is committed to furthering safety in the shipping industry and reducing carbon dioxide emissions to the atmosphere,” says Hidenori Iwasa.

As a natural consequence of the collaboration between WNI and NAVTOR, the NavStation version 5.0 will be adapted to seamless integrate to WNI OSR (Optimum Ship Routing) service, ensuring a transparent view for all stakeholders at sea and on shore. 

NAVTOR and WNI have access to tremendous amounts of data from thousands of vessels operating today. Together we will leverage that data to develop a solution that learns to perceive its environment and recommend optimal actions,” says Tor Svanes. “Our customers will be provided with a service capable of maximising performance, efficiency and safety, even during passage under rapidly changing conditions. Together NAVTOR and WNI are plotting a new course for a more sustainable, predictable and cost-efficient maritime industry.”

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