The Municipality of Civitavecchia and Confitarma collaborate with the Escola Europea in “Formati al Porto”

Last month the mayor of Civitavecchia, Ernesto Tedesco, together with the vice mayor Massimiliano Grasso, the president of Confitarma, Maurizio Mattioli, the general manager of Confimatra Luca Sisto, and the director of the Escola Europea Eduard Rodès have signed a cooperation agreement, guaranteeing the availability to finance training courses within the port area of Civitavecchia. The new project “Formati al Porto” supported by the AdSP of the Tyrrhenian Sea in the Centre-North and by the Escola Europea – Intermodal Transport, aims to bring today’s students and future professionals closer to the knowledge of the professions of the logistics sector, with a particular focus on maritime activity and intermodal transport.

The project was borne out of a context in which the logistical positioning of the port of Civitavecchia, both in terms of territorial and socio-economic aspects, must take infrastructural measures, offer competitive services and, above all, invest in the human factor. For this, a well-prepared logistical community, capable of facing future challenges and strategically placing Civitavecchia at the forefront of the logistical activity of the Mediterranean, is needed.

The main objective of the initiative is to bring the community closer to port activities and to make it possible for the young to discover the characteristics of the professions related to port undertakings directly from the sources themselves. The students will have direct experience of infrastructure, facilities and operations. In addition, the project will lessen the disparity between the qualifications required by the companies and the skills curently offered by the education system.

The Municipality of Civitavecchia, thanks to its privileged position near the main logistic infrastructures of Lazio, including the port, the industrial area and the parks of the logistic activities, brings together many professionals and operators who work mainly in the port of Civitavecchia and who share the passion to spread the training in this professional specialty among the students of the educational centers that focus on port activity, tourism, transport, logistics and international trade.

Confitarma is the primary association within the Italian shipping industry, representing almost the entire merchant fleet of the country and bringing together shipping companies and shipping groups operating in freight and passenger transport, cruises and ancillary services traffic. In particular, it provides its members with information and offers assistance on development, the environment and energy, infrastructure and logistics, tourism, business culture, the labour market and training.

Following the great success of the first Formati al Porto course held last week at the AdSP of the Tyrrhenian Centre-North Sea, these new agreements will give many more students the opportunity to participate in the training courses organized by the Escola Europea.

The training is given by experts and professionals from the Italian and Spanish sectors, ensuring that the participants receive high quality educational content. The teaching team, yet to be confirmed, will be composed of representatives of companies and institutions directly involved in the management of short sea shipping in Italy.

You can find out more infromation about the Escola’s courses, both in Italy and in Spain, on the following website:

https://escolaeuropea.eu/training/

Innovative perspectives for training of the new generation in the Blue Economy

In 2019 the Escola’s team has decided to take it upon themselves to carry out a research study on the current state of experiential training offers in the areas in which the Escola is active. This study was borne out of the recognised need to understand the exponential changes that are happening in the world of transport in light of the fourth industrial revolution. This is particularly true when dealing with professions in the Blue Economy, which hosts the majority of the global international trade. The Escola’s team hoped to conclude that there is a rapidly growing need to adapt training programmes of professionals hoping to enter the maritime world, to help counter this reality and thus better prepare the individuals for the industries.

The resulting study showed that when synergies are created in a network of training centres and companies in the sector within a country or between different countries, the result is rapid learning and the creation of innovative training programmes, which better prepare the professionals for the jobs of the future. Using data data collected from training centres and companies that frequently collaborate in the Escola’s courses, the team concluded that the courses offered by the Escola have a format that is both innovative and experiential in nature, and thus by internationalising and mixing the groups, the training is more successful and current to the needs of the market. It is important to develop tools and course models for training centres and companies to follow, and to ensure that more students have access to them. The final paper can be downloaded from the Escola’s website.

At the end of November, the Escola’s team then travelled to Portugal to present the findings at the first annual World of Shipping International Conference on Maritime Affairs, which took place in Carcavelos between the 21st and the 22nd of November. During the conference topics such as improved waterborne transport concepts, energy efficiency and emission control in waterborne transport concepts, optimisation of transport infrastructure including terminal, the port of the future, the autonomous and unmanned vessels, complex and value – added specialised vessels, and digitalisation were covered in other studies presented by scientists, researchers and industry professionals from around the world. The conference, which had its pilot event this year, aims to establish itself as a meeting point of reference bringing together the industry, leading academic scientists, researchers and research scholars to exchange and share their experiences and research results on all aspects of maritime transport to promote a better future for the industry.

Check out the Escola’s paper here: https://escolaeuropea.eu/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/WofS_061_Full_Paper_FINAL.pdf.

Interested to know more? You can contact the article authors to enquire about the study itself or any future research planned.

Blue Innovation – Digital Twins

How can ports innovate with the Internet of Things?

In recent years, the shipping industry has been playing catch-up with many innovative trends that other industries have embraced. One of those trends has been the concept of digital twins – the idea to use the Internet of Things and Big Data to create a virtual entity that essentially operates in the same was as the physical one. So what are digital twins, and how can they be applied in the Blue Economy?

A digital twin is “a digital replica of a living or non-living physical entity. By combining the physical and the virtual world, data is provided enabling the virtual entity to exist at the same time with the physical entity”. Within the digital system, replicas of physical characteristics can be used and tested, both to streamline efficiency and to troubleshoot potential problems. If set up and programmed correctly, digital twins can even ensure that physical tests are not necessary to implement any changes.  Today there are estimates that predict that in the next decade, these innovations will account for 10% of improvements and effectiveness of more than half of companies across all industries.

How does it work?

The technologies used to create the virtual representations of real objects are unquestioningly complex. Put simply, the twins use “digital tools and real-time data to virtually create, test, build and monitor a product or process – closing the feedback loop between design and operations.” As previously stated, the goal of these is to improve and test new designs and processes without disturbing ongoing operations – a factor that could be critical when it comes to transport operations in a globalised port. Imagine testing out new, more sustainable bunkering operations in a port at absolutely no risk or delay in transit time for the vessels – any port authority’s dream! The systems can achieve this by using artificial intelligence algorithms to analyse the data put in, and thus come up with accurate predictions for operations, designs, processes, etc. For example, using this approach within a port it would be possible to accurately “predict what the best time is to moor and depart”, therewith significantly reducing wait times and financial losses. An article by Port Technology on the subject exemplified this very accurately: “With a digital twin of the port, it’s possible to calculate exactly how much cargo needs to be unloaded there. This allows the vessel to sail sooner and with more cargo to its final destination”.

The technologies have already been applied to all industries – from Formula 1 races to Space exploration missions to actual humans. Perhaps the most impressive of all digital twins is the one that exists of an actual city – namely of Singapore. In 2018, Dassault Systèmes completed the virtual simulation, called 3DEXPERIENCit, which helps city planners analyse and improve energy consumption of its citizens, alongside other aspects of their everyday lives. Talk about Smart Cities!

What about Smart Ports?

Within the Blue Economy, digital twins have already begun to emerge. Virtual copies of vessels, simulations of transport operations, among other things have already helped improve operations. Ports are not lagging far behind in this revolution either – the Port of Rotterdam, Europe’s largest port, has enthusiastically invested in the endeavour, which is being developed with the help of the Rotterdam Port Authority, Axians, Cisco, IBM® and many others.

Source: https://www.forbes.com/sites/bernardmarr/2019/04/23/7-amazing-examples-of-digital-twin-technology-in-practice/#332afba76443

The project, aptly named Port Vision 2030, “establishes where action is needed to ensure that companies can operate optimally within the Global Hub and within Europe’s Industrial Cluster.” Using IBM Internet of Things technology, the Port strives to become the first fully digital port by 2030, and simultaneously the model Smart Port for others to follow.

During this year’s Smart Cities World Expo Congress, which will take place in Barcelona between the 19th and the 21st of November 2019, innovative new technologies will be showcased and presented to all attendees. The event will also play host to a SmartPorts Summit, which will bring together the world’s top 10 smart ports, and give them the opportunity to showcase their most innovative projects in sustainability, digitisation, innovation and mobility. There is still time to register – check out the passes and join the Escola’s team on the Expo floor.

Written by:

  • Lidia Slawinska, Consultant – Escola Europea – Intermodal Transport

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