Intelligent ship navigation startup launches with safety as goal

December 16, 2020 //By Rich Pell
Intelligent ship navigation startup launches with safety as goal
Maritime technology startup SailPlan has announced its launch and that it is building an intelligent navigation platform for ships that enables ship operators to increase safety, reduce operational costs, and increase schedule integrity.

Today, says the company, which was founded by Jacob Ruytenbeek, an autonomous systems expert, ships navigate much the same way that they did 400 years ago - with human eyes and ears. Aimed at addressing the need for safer and more efficient navigation in a world with an ever-growing demand for cargo, the company's navigation platform for ships is designed for the future with a digital twin, advanced routing, long-range collision avoidance, geographic awareness, predictive analytics, and much more.

Seafaring, says the company, is the world's deadliest job, with nearly 1,000 ships and thousands of lives having been lost in the past ten years. Most catastrophic incidents result from human error, as navigators rely primarily on their eyes and ears in crowded environments with little room for error.

"The last major advancement in maritime navigation was the Automatic Identification System (AIS) in the 1990s," says Ruytenbeek. "Advances in computer processing, storage, and satellite communications at sea mean that we are no longer limited to guessing what actions other vessels will take. That's why I launched SailPlan, which will enable ship navigators to see beyond the horizon to avoid collision scenarios before they're even a threat."

The company's platform is designed to make ship operations safer and more efficient by identifying collision risks beyond the navigator's line of sight so that ships can safely navigate around them. Drawing on data around vessel traffic, weather, geographic awareness, and more, the company says it offers operators unparalleled situational awareness that improves safety and efficiency with a routing engine that alerts ship navigators to potential collision risks hours, or even days, in advance.

SailPlan says it also gives navigators the ability to proactively avoid congested waters, separate from potential collision scenarios, and reduce operating expenses to a far greater degree than possible with current market solutions. In addition to its navigation safety approach on the bridge, the platform integrates engine monitoring into its situational


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