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Europort’s masterclasses in leadership

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be87f198-921c-45dd-95ea-c134a7a9ecdfRecognising that effective leadership and collaboration are fundamental elements in the future success of the maritime industry, Europort 2015 will feature a series of masterclasses as part of this year’s conference programme. Each masterclass will address the leadership challenges currently facing the industry across the areas of design, technology, efficiency and human capital.

Domino’s recently made headlines with pizzas being delivered to doorsteps by drones. Google describes their self-driving car as ‘the realization of a science fiction dream’. There are a number of examples of autonomous vehicles on land and the technology themed masterclass sessions will delve into this hot topic and the effects it could have on the shipping industry. Will it make operations more efficient and less expensive? What are the latest developments? Dr. Jens-Olof Lindh, R&D Management at Saab Kockums, will address the influence of unmanned systems in maritime operations. Prof. Eric van Hooydonk of the University of Ghent will present the results of a study on the regulation of unmanned merchant ships. According to his study maritime law appears to be relatively well armed for the introduction of unmanned (either remotely operated or autonomous) merchant ships.

A further session will investigate the implications for manufacturing, in what is dubbed ‘The Fourth Industrial Revolution: Automation in Manufacturing’. Speakers will present on topics concerning ‘smart industry’, where systems interact and regulate those interactions without the need for human interjection. In this session Mr. Jan Kranendonk of KRANENDONK Smart Robotics will introduce the topic of ‘robots at the yard’ and their place amongst other smart technologies to assist with non-repetitive production. Techniques such as 3D printing, which offers the opportunity to reduce lead-time between design and production as well as the possibility to print spare parts on board vessels, will also be covered. Participants will debate what these trends mean for the production process, services and business models of maritime companies in the future.

Moving towards a sustainable transport solution whilst maintaining the cutting-edge in design, manufacturing and innovative production capabilities, is the challenge explored within the design-themed masterclass. What knowledge is needed to create the most innovative vessels of the future and how is it possible to minimise risk and failures?

The efficiency masterclasses will combine the views of leading academics, industry professionals and ship owners in an interesting and enlightening debate focused on the topics of condition-based monitoring and fuel. In the constant drive to minimise downtime and the time and cost spent on maintenance there is huge potential for using real-time data to better effect. New concepts in condition-based maintenance will be discussed in depth with the view to achieving zero downtime in the not too distant future. Speakers already confirmed for this session include Prof. Henik Akkermans, Scientific Director, World Class Maintenance and the University of Tilburg, and Mr. Fred van Beers, CEO, Blohm and Voss Shipyards.

The fuel session is especially timely considering the changes in regulation that are now in force and the fluctuations in the energy market. Ship owners need every advantage to stay competitive and future-proof their fleets. This session will provide trend forecasts – Lloyd’s Register will present their ‘Global Marine Fuel Trends 2030’, analysis and solutions within a unique forum where participants are able to share experiences and hear from those with insight into the complicated decision process of devising a long-term fuel strategy.

The Europort Masterclasses are an initiative of Ahoy Rotterdam, organiser of Europort, and Netherlands Maritime Technology (NMT), the Dutch association of shipyards, maritime suppliers and service providers. “As an association we promote and facilitate research, development and innovation within the sector. Not only within the Netherlands, but also on a European level, values that are shared by Europort and extended onto an international platform, ” remarked Sanne de Vleeschhouwer, NMT’s project manager for the Europort masterclass programme. “These masterclasses are an excellent way for maritime companies to inspire each other, learn from other industries, share knowledge and profit from the networking opportunity.”

In total, six masterclasses will run over the course of the exhibition, which will take place in Rotterdam from 3-6 November 2015. For full details of the masterclass programme and to register, please visit www.europort.nl

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