As you may have gathered already, ECOPRODIGI is all about improving the seedbed for a deeper and wider maritime industry digitalisation. This is the reason why we are evaluating the industry’s various processes, identifying eco-efficiencies and piloting digital solutions to solve them. A crucial part of the work is taking the findings to the grass-root level, i.e. to the people who will be using the digital tools and the companies that would benefit from the solutions available. Training events are an important part of our work during the final year of the project and this was the reason our project partners at Klaipeda Science and Technology Park and Machine Technology Center Turku Ltd. invited interested target groups from the shipbuilding community to take part in “Digitalisation and 3D scanning at the shipyard” training day in Klaipeda on the 5th of February.

As explained by Juha Valtanen (Machine Technology Turku Ltd.), the shipbuilding part of ECOPRODIGI has focused on exploring how shipyards can benefit from digitalisation in terms of their internal and external operations. Another important aspect has been to clarify what kind of learning processes are needed to make the most out of the potential in digital solutions. These issues have been addressed by exploring processes at Meyer Turku shipyard in Finland and the work done by Western Baltic Engineering in Lithuania. Based on the findings, shipyard ecosystem can gain considerable efficiency-improvements with the help of digital solutions such as 3D laser scanning technologies. However, in order to benefit from the solutions, the end-users must have the capacity and know-how to utilise them.

To introduce 3D scanning to the audience, Daniel Nåfors (Chalmers University of Technology) presented the basics of the technologies that are used for spatial data capture. In ECOPRODIGI, the focus has been on 3D laser scanning which can be used to document real conditions and detect deviations. According to Mr. Nåfors, 3D laser scanning provides very accurate data that can be used in, for example, exploring the condition of a ship, planning maintenance or doing different kinds of simulations. The data from 3D laser scanning can therefore help companies to plan operations and processes more efficiently. In order to explore the benefits of the technology, the audience was invited to test a virtual game which the researchers at Chalmers University have designed to enable users to explore the way 3D scanning operates.

Justas Kavaliauskas (Western Baltic Engineering) discussed 3D laser scanning experiences from a shipbuilder’s perspective. According to Mr. Kavaliauskas, digitalisation of workflows with solutions such as 3D laser scanning make it possible to create full 3D models from onboard surveys. In retrofitting, 3D scanning enables shipbuilding companies to create more detailed plans before the actual installation processes. In the case of new builds, 3D scanning can be used to check measurements and to ensure better quality. In ECOPRODIGI, 3D laser scanner has been used to perform total station measurements for 2 ship blocks which are produced in Klaipeda and then shipped for assembly in Turku. The added value is gained from savings in time and money, improved communication, enhanced quality and the improved competitiveness of the entire value chain.

Andrius Uldukis (DNV GL) provided the audience with an overview of how digitalisation is affecting classification societies. Mr Uldukis reminded the audience that maritime industry is currently being transformed by increasingly unpredictable markets, the growing expectations and complexity of regulations, and the major impact of new technologies. Data collection and producing value from data is of great importance and digitalisation offers a range of opportunities to modernise classification processes in maritime sectors. The aim is to move from rigid and manual processes to flexible and smart solutions which cause minimun interference in ship operations, bring the global expertise on board ships whenever and wherever, and improve quality and safety levels by using technology and data in smarter ways.

In addition to 3D laser scanning, there are various other ways digitalisation can increase eco-efficiency in shipyard processes and ecosystems. Mr. Aki Piiroinen (Machine Technology Center Turku Ltd.) presented the audience with some of the key areas which can be improved with the help of digital tools. These included solutions for reducing waste and the use of energy and chemicals, improving recyclability, enhancing durability of products and the level of service. As a concrete example of the potential benefits of digital tools, Mr. Piiroinen provided a demo of mobile Welding Procedure Specifications which provide an efficient way to share, use and update process-specific instructions in various languages in hectic shipyard environments.

The final slot of the training day was dedicated to fine-tuning one of the digitalisation roadmaps that will be produced as part of the project’s outputs. The aim was to present some of the results have gained in earlier Future Foresight sessions in order to gather insights from the shipyard stakeholders, and map their views and visions on the Digital Roadmap for Shipyards. While the roadmaps are targeted mainly to policy-makers and authorities, input from the industry-side is crucial to ensure the authenticity and accuracy of the finalised outputs. The brilliant audience of approximately 20 maritime and shipbuilding experts in Klaipeda did not let us down as they provided valuable opinions and content for ECOPRODIGI’s researchers who will be developing the roadmaps further.

All in all, we had a very successful day in Klaipeda with fruitful discussions and many practical examples from which to learn. ECOPRODIGI’s training sessions will continue as the final year of the project continues with full steam ahead so stay tuned for updates from us and our partners!