Wärtsilä SmartMove Suite sets sail with the American Steamship Company
Wärtsilä launches SmartMove Suite, a unique pairing of sensor tech with navigation systems for semi-autonomous ship movement, the company said in its release.
American Steamship Company, a subsidiary of Rand-ASC Holdings LLC, is the first to install Wärtsilä SmartMove solutions for hands-off transit along the Cuyahoga River in Ohio, US.
Great Lakes self-unloading bulk freighter, MV American Courage, with cargo carrying capacity of 24,300 gross tonnage, is the largest ship ever to perform automatic dock-to-dock operation.
Wärtsilä Voyage has introduced Wärtsilä SmartMove Suite to the global shipping market. This flagship offering for semi-autonomous sailing features the industry’s most advanced sensors and high-accuracy ship control systems, effectively taking the concept of automated dock-to-dock operations to the next level. Fully retrofittable, the SmartMove Suite can soup-up existing vessels with next-generation capabilities to improve safety, efficiency and productivity on the water. The technology enables navigation officers to perform at a higher level.
The first order was placed by American Steamship Company (ASC), a subsidiary of Rand-ASC Holdings LLC, and has been installed on the MV American Courage, a 194 metres Great Lakes self-unloading bulk freighter with a cargo carrying capacity of 24,300 gross tonnage. This is the largest ship ever capable of performing automated docking and dock-to-dock sailing operations. The winding, often narrowing Cuyahoga River in Ohio, US, can be heavily congested, making it by far the most challenging of shipping routes for any vessel using automated sailing and docking technology. The Wärtsilä solution has been successfully tested on the American Courage since March 2020.
Wärtsilä Voyage provides a standard hardware setup with redundant controllers and displays, along with a sensor suite (comprising gyro, MRU, wind, and GNSS sensors). This is connected to a single digital platform through which five software products are available: SmartDock, SmartTransit, SmartEntry, SmartPredict, and SmartDrive. The core blocks of software (including controllers, sensor processing, Thruster Allocation Logic and track follow) are sourced from Wärtsilä Voyage’s Dynamic Positioning portfolio, which has been in use over many years in some of the world’s harshest environments.
Rand-ASC Holdings LLC is a leading provider of bulk freight shipping services throughout the Great Lakes region. Through its subsidiaries, the Company operates a fleet of three conventional bulk carriers and eleven self-unloading bulk carriers including three tug/barge units. The Company is the only carrier able to offer significant domestic port to port services in both Canada and the U.S. on the Great Lakes. The Company's vessels operate under the U.S. Jones Act which reserves domestic waterborne commerce to vessels that are U.S. owned, built and crewed and the Canada Coasting Trade Act which reserves domestic waterborne commerce to Canadian registered and crewed vessels that operate between Canadian ports.
Wärtsilä in brief
Wärtsilä is a global leader in smart technologies and complete lifecycle solutions for the marine and energy markets. By emphasising sustainable innovation, total efficiency and data analytics, Wärtsilä maximises the environmental and economic performance of the vessels and power plants of its customers. In 2019, Wärtsilä’s net sales totalled EUR 5.2 billion with approximately 19,000 employees. The company has operations in over 200 locations in more than 80 countries around the world. Wärtsilä is listed on Nasdaq Helsinki.