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Denmark adopts new measures to enhance maritime activity and boost pleasure craft business

The Danish Parliament (Folketinget) announced that it has adopted a number of new initiatives in the maritime area, in order to ensure and enhance growth in Danish maritime activities and boost the pleasure craft business.

The new initiatives adopted by the Danish Government regard four areas, which are the following:

– The provisions on foreign owners’ possibility of having ships registered under the Danish flag have been adjusted and clarified. With this measure, Denmark aims to retain and extend its global position as a major attractive flag State and as a maritime hub.
– The possibilities of having liens and other rights registered in medium-sized pleasure craft have been made simpler, by moving the registration from the Register of Shipping to the Personal Registry. This is expected to result in increased sale of pleasure craft and increased use of loan finance with positive economic consequences for banks, financing institutions and boat dealers.
– The liability limitation amounts in connection with wreck removal have also been increased. Thus, the expenses incurred for the removal of wrecks following marine accidents, etc. are paid by the shipowner and its insurance company rather than by the State.

Finally, a number of other amendments have been adopted, including an amendment of the provisions on maritime liens, whereby port dues are secured through maritime liens in the ship and also in connection with privately owned ports.

The new initiatives are set to enter into force on 1 January 2018. However, the amendments related to pleasure craft will not become effective until 1 March 2018.

Minister for Industry, Business and Financial Affairs Brian Mikkelsen, said: ”These initiatives will help ensure that the Danish flag remains attractive in a globalised world. At the same time, we will continue to simplify a number of regulations for the benefit of, inter alia, yachtsmen in Denmark.”

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The importance of cargo ventilation news bulletin issued by Japan P&I Club

Photo credit: Japan P&I Club
Photo credit: Japan P&I Club

The Japan P&I Club has recently published a news bulletin. It highlights the importance of cargo ventilation, the introduction of air into and through the cargo space and the exhausting of the in-hold air.

Ventilation may be needed in order to ensure that there is a sufficient oxygen supply for safe personnel entry into the cargo space. In addition, ventilation can remove poisonous and flammable gases which could give rise to a dangerous situation.

These gases might be produced by the cargo itself, e.g. evolution of carbon monoxide from a heating coal cargo, or they may originate from another external source, e.g. phosphine gas evolution during cargo fumigation.

Regardless of the case, ventilation requires the measurement of the gases present in the air until such a time that they can be considered to have returned to normal or ‘safe’ levels. It is not primarily concerned with the care of the cargo.

Apart from the above safety reasons, ventilating cargo spaces aims to minimise condensation, or so-called ‘sweat’, forming inside the cargo space.

This is an important aspect of caring for a particular cargo while it is in the custody of the master of the carrying vessel, because a failure to do so may result in cargo damage and thus a cargo claim at outturn.

Moreover, when deciding whether or not to ventilate a cargo compartment to eliminate/minimise sweat formation, it is crucial that the crew measures and compares the external air temperature with that of the cargo itself, or the air inside the cargo space.

Finally, Japan P&I Club outlined the cargoes that face the most risk.

Namely, cargoes that are more susceptible to damage caused by sweat are those that will deteriorate in some way when in contact with water.

These cargoes may be either hygroscopic or non-hygroscopic. Hygroscopic cargoes are those which have an inherent moisture content that can interact with the air. Non-hygroscopic cargoes are those that do not have an inherent moisture content, or at least not one which can interact with the air.

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Danish Shipping presents new “Ahead of the Curve” strategy

Photo credit: Danish Shipping
Photo credit: Danish Shipping

Chairman of Danish Shipping, Claus V. Hemmingsen, has presented the organisation’s new strategy – “Ahead of the Curve”, which covers the next four years and focuses on competencies, digitization and technological development as catalysts for continued growth in the coming years.

Danish Shipping’s strategy for 2018-2021 was launched at a members’ meeting. The strategy envisions to grow the Danish-flagged fleet with more than 10 pct. measured in tonnage, and minimum 10 pct. measured in the number of ships, during the strategy period.

Furthermore, it aims to increase onshore employment to 7000 employees, while maintaining at least a constant number of Danish seafarers.

“It is our ambition that Denmark stays a leading shipping nation globally by being ahead of the curve. Danish shipping companies must continue to create value for customers, partners and locally, while also acting as responsible industry leaders. This requires framework conditions that are best in class and an approach where we as an organisation actively influence the development of the shipping industry, thus paving the way for global shipping to grow with a minimal footprint on our surroundings,” Claus V. Hemmingsen, said.

The strategy includes five key objectives for Danish Shipping for the coming four years.

In addition to the development of competitive framework conditions, the strategy wants to support the IMO as an effective governing body that delivers timely responses to global issues such as the regulation of the shipping industry’s impact on the climate and the environment.

Other objectives concentrate on competencies and new technology and maritime innovation, which has the potential to change the shipping industry.

“Education, digitization and maritime innovation and research will take up even more of our agenda in the coming years. We must further develop our maritime competencies in Denmark, so we have a solid supply of qualified employees. This applies both at sea, but also onshore, where digital competencies and an understanding of the latest technological trends will be crucial to maintaining the shipping companies’ competitiveness,” Claus V. Hemmingsen added.

The new strategy resulted in Danish Shipping’s reshuffling its organisation in November. With the new organisation, more organisational resources will be working on delivering the objectives that are prioritized.

“We have changed the organisation to deliver on the strategic objectives and targets. We now look forward to continued close cooperation with our members and partners, so that we can advance Danish shipping with an ambition to be ahead of the curve in order to increase our influence,” Anne H. Steffensen, CEO of Danish Shipping, concluded.

Read the strategy document in full: Danish-Shipping-Ahead-of-the-curve

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Inspecting hull integrity remotely with a new submersible is now possible with Deep Trekker ™

Deep Trekker ™ means underwater hull integrity inspections can be made remotely
Deep Trekker ™ means underwater hull integrity inspections can be made remotely

Deep Trekker ™ has added to its fleet of portable, robust underwater drone robots; the DT640 Utility Crawler is designed to perform a multitude of underwater tasks.

This is a brand new inspection and service robot and is said to be the first three-wheeled vehicle of its kind. Its modular construction allows for the unit to be equipped with multiple operative attachments making the DT640 more than just an inspection vehicle. The Utility Crawler can be outfitted with magnetic wheels, pressure washer, vacuum, thickness gauge and a dozer.

Fixed with an HD camera, magnetic wheels and a multitude of application-specific add-ons; the Utility Crawler is incredibly versatile and easy to deploy at a moment’s notice.

The Utility Crawler, designed by Deep Trekker ™, is submersible to 50 meters (164 ft.), and houses its own onboard batteries, making deployment easy and quick for tasks such as contraband inspections and testing hull integrity or thickness. Magnetic wheels and various add-ons permit diverse applications such as scraping away marine growth or power washing the hull or examining for invasive species while in port. The Utility Crawler has both military and municipality applications as well.

With magnetic wheels, the Deep Trekker ™ DT640 Utility MagCrawler can crawl along vertical angles to inspect the integrity of ship’s hulls even underwater. Instead of dry-docking or returning to shore, the crew can immediately inspect the hull if they fear something is wrong, via the live video on the handheld controller.

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Wingsail technology saves fuel and reduces emissions

Oceanfoil’s wingsail technology could achieve an average fuel consumption and emissions saving of 14% on a mid-sized tanker vessel.

This is the research finding from BMT, who said that Oceanfoil’s fuel-assist aerofoil technology, which uses wingsails to capture effective directional thrust from wind power, could also save up to up to 20% in certain wind and sea conditions.

Charles Moray, managing director of Oceanfoil, commented: “Oceanfoil’s ‘wingsail’, is a propulsion assist technology that is well suited for tankers and bulk carriers, which provide good opportunity for the wingsails to use the wind to create forward thrust – thus reducing reliance upon the vessel’s main engines.

“For a mid-sized tanker like the one used for the BMT report, this would lead to savings of up to at least $500,000 per year – a huge reduction in operating expenses.”

BMT’s study considered a system of four Oceanfoil wingsails over the course of a year on a 183m, 50,000t deadweight (dwt) Panamax vessel operating in the North Atlantic.

The study identified the thrust benefits for all wind angles around the ship and used the average to define the Oceanfoil wingsail thrust at a given ship and wind speed; an approach that BMT described in its report as “conservative”.

Based on data taken when operating the vessel at or near its Continuous Service Rating (CSR), savings were estimated at 13% for worldwide operations, factoring marginally calmer sea states.

Mr Moray said that Oceanfoil is in talks with partners who could pioneer its technology.

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