One of the challenges for shipowners and operators when deciding on new technologies is often that they need to be ordered without experiencing how they work in real life environments. Wärtsilä Voyage, part of the Wärtsilä technology group, presented at SMM in Hamburg a unique new solution, a demonstration and innovation vessel that presents a platform to experiment with different technologies.
The 79-foot-long vessel named Ahti she began her life as a fishing patrol boat for the German government. It was chosen as a target for technology upgrade facilities to demonstrate what is already technologically possible for the current fleet and to create a platform for further innovation and development. According to the company, it will benefit from a platform for tests to be carried out in real-life changing marine conditions that can be difficult and expensive to recreate in a laboratory environment.
The creation of a floating R&D facility also helps Wärtsilä Voyage reduce the time and cost barriers associated with real-life testing, yielding meaningful results with a much lower cost and risk basis than testing at sea. large scale directly. Ahti it also creates a proprietary resource where customers and technology partners can collaborate. It will house associated technologies as well as those developed by Wärtsilä.
“Technology designed to solve the biggest industry challenges needs to be tested in situations that are as close to real-life scenarios as possible,” said Hendrik Bußhoff, Product Manager – Autonomous Systems, Wärtsilä Voyage during the preview of the new platform. “We understand that real world testing is expensive and time consuming. Testing new equipment almost always means testing it on a customer’s ship, which can often bring with it many obligations and questions around documentation, schedules, data ownership, and compliance. That’s why we invest in Ahti. We now have a resource that will shorten time to market, allow us to fail faster and innovate faster, and to compare and understand different technologies outside of controlled environments.”
In the first half of 2022, AhtiThe bridge was upgraded with various products from the Wärtsilä Voyage portfolio. The vessel has also been outfitted with technology products from market partners from OSCAR and Drynet. Soon, Wärtsilä Voyage will install SceneScan, SmartMove, Remote Control and Satellite Connectivity on board. With this expansive breadth of technology on board, the company says Ahti it has become a highly automated, connected, situation-aware and data-enabled bridge to the future of the maritime industry.