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Wider Application of ICT/Smart Shipping Office


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Information and Communication Technology (ICT) such as IoT and big data analysis has been growing rapidly and potential applications at sea and between sea and shore are expanding. MOL established the Smart Shipping Office as a core division. The office aims to deliver a new level of customer service by incorporating the underlying seed technologies of ICT into the MOL Group's ship operational know-how and fully grasping customers' potential needs as the group forges ahead to become the world leader in safe operation.

In addition, the office will take responsibility for development of advanced support technologies for safer vessel operation, one of the concepts behind the "ISHIN NEXT – MOL SMART SHIP PROJECT –" (please refer to page 17 for details). In May 2017, a joint project between MOL and Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. to develop the technological concept for an autonomous ocean transport system was selected by Japan's Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transportation and Tourism (MLIT) for its FY2017 Transportation Research and Technology Promotion Program. The joint project will develop the concept for autonomous vessels, drawing upon the strengths of each participating company and organization, setting a course toward development of the technology needed to realize autonomous vessels that can provide reliable, safe, and efficient ocean transport.

<FMS. Safety>
Monitoring system for weather information and conditions surrounding vessels in operation.

MOL uses FMS.Safety, which was developed in cooperation with Weathernews Inc. (WNI), to check on the weather, sea conditions, and other conditions surrounding the approximately 840 vessels operated by MOL Group companies, 365 days a year, 24 hours a day. There is always someone available if a ship captain requires assistance.

'Hazard Map' Function,' Operational Support Tool, Aiming at a New Level of Safety

'Hazard Map' Function,'MOL has added a hazard map function to the Captain's Dynamic Operation System for Counter planning and Analysis (Capt.'s DOSCA). The content of the hazard map includes past incidents involving operated vessels, hazardous sea areas, regions subject to special regulations, and actual measured weather information. The enhanced system makes it easier for crewmembers to recognize potential hazards near the routes they are using. Mariners who have this kind of information in advance can recognize problems before they occur and operate their vessels with greater safety and efficiency.

New autopilot route control function

MOL, along with Tokyo Keiki Inc., conducted a performance demonstration test of its autopilot route control function, called "Advanced Control for Ecology (ACE)", onboard a vessel in service. The ACE estimates disturbance effects such as wind and tide by setting the vessel's course direction. It optimally controls the helm to minimize route deviation and reduce the number of course changes required during a voyage, achieving significant reductions in fuel consumption compared to a similar vessel with a conventional control system.

Approximately 1.5% energy-savings effect was confirmed through a verification test using "Fleet Monitor".

<Fleet Monitor>
Vessel operation monitoring system

MOL Group has introduced Fleet Monitor, a system developed by Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co., Ltd., on the approximately 60 vessels. The Internet-based ship-to-shore integrated information infrastructure system manages ship operation while sharing operation information from vessels in service. The system is automatically transmitted to offices on land at regular interval via satellite telecommunication.

Condition-based engine monitoring system

MOL has started a demonstration test of a nextgeneration condition-based engine monitoring system called "electronic Global Internet Customer Support neXt" (CMAXS e-GICSX) aboard the methanol carrier Mayaro, delivered in 2015.
Using the vessel operation monitoring system, CMAXS e-GICSX offers early detection of engine abnormalities that crewmembers may not be aware of. Thus, it contributes to prevent engine problems and minimizing downtime.

This advanced engine monitoring system brings together cutting-edge data analysis functions based on joint research between Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. and ClassNK. It detects abnormalities onboard, regardless of ship-to-shore telecommunication status, and creates troubleshooting displays based on the detected abnormalities. It is different from conventional condition-based monitoring systems and can analyze correlations among multiple sensors.

Development of Telecommunication Infrastructure

MOL reviews existing fleet broadband (the ship-toshore telecommunication environment) as appropriate, and began introducing high-speed, high-capacity telecommunication service using the state-of-the-art IMMARAT GX satellite. This allows us to grasp real-time information such as locations of vessels in operation, speed, and engine status, and contributes to further reduction of CO2 emissions and realizing safe operation. In addition, this facilitates smooth communication between ship and shore and a better work environment for crewmembers.

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