CSM, CMMI: Digital Waves Program Kicks Off

Columbia Shipmanagement Ltd (CSM) and the Cyprus Marine and Maritime Institute (CMMI) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to launch Digital Waves, a joint innovation program to explore digitalization of certain domains of the maritime industry.

Digital Waves
Source: Pixabay under CC0 Creative Commons license

As explained, the strategic partnership will enable CSM and CMMI to extend their services to other areas of mutual interest, with a common goal of making the shipping industry safer and more sustainable.

The program includes research and innovation in domains such as the gathering of data on ships and from other stakeholders coupled with the latest trends in connectivity and artificial intelligence (AI).

According to the two parties, Digital Waves will have a global perspective and address domains including the sensorization of ships, augmented and virtual reality, the gathering and grooming of data using 5G & edge-cloud technologies combined with modern trends in machine learning and cognitive artificial intelligence. Parts of such technologies have already begun to be implemented in the maritime sector as well as in the manufacturing sector through the Industry 4.0 revolution.

Specifically, Digital Waves will explore these modern technological trends and combine them into a holistic program that is expected to contribute to significant efficiencies, cost savings, and strategic transformation. The program will also analyze the value-chain of the maritime sector and investigate potential transformations of the business model.

CSM and CMMI have assembled a team of international experts who will investigate the current market and innovate with new products and services which will, in turn, be offered to the sector through targeted solutions.

Digital Waves’ joint innovation program has already started and has been divided into three phases. To gain a deeper understanding of the present mode of operation (PMO), the first phase involves a strategic analysis of the main issues faced by the maritime industry stakeholders. The second phase will involve testing and implementation in real-time maritime environments and the final phase will see the development of digital products and solutions.

“As we enter the new year and a new decade amid the beginning of fundamental digital transformation in shipping, we envisage, through Digital Waves, to benefit from the combination of the rise of improved and cost sustainable connectivity and digitalisation to transform every aspect of the shipmanagement model over the next three decades with a primary focus on safety and efficiency,” Mark O’Neil, President of CSM, commented.

”We are very excited that only a few weeks after CMMI set sail – having received great support in funds and resources from the EU, the Cyprus Government and our industry and academia partners – we are now embarking with Columbia Shipmanagement on a voyage of exploration into the Sea of Big Data. A voyage that promises a lot of opportunities,” Zacharias Siokouros, CEO of CMMI, said.

CMMI was established earlier this year following its selection for funding under the EU’s HORIZON 2020 Programme, Spreading Excellence and Widening Participation Call. It was awarded EUR 30 million (USD 33.3 million) funding from the EU Commission and the Cyprus Government while more than EUR 25 million are to be provided by partners and industry and academia stakeholders mainly as in-kind contributions.