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Stowage Planning with the Latest Maritime Tech

Improve Your Stowage Planning With New Maritime Tech

The Economic Times recently published an article on Indian tech solutions that are shaping the future of the maritime industry and praised the innovation of Indian companies and the benefits of their products, namely Solverminds and its flagship product: SONATA.

Today, we’re exploring the benefits of line optimiser products – SONATA and other machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence-based (AI) solutions for age-old challenges (such as stowage planning) facing the maritime industry.

The latest advancements in AI and machine learning technology are changing stowage planning, vessel scheduling, chartering and equipment repositioning processes for shipping companies and their customers. Companies using automated systems and carefully formulated algorithms can save time and money, reduce carbon emissions and fuel costs, and resolve widespread congestion and capacity issues.

However, global trade depends on shipping, and the industry largely depends on manual operations. Many companies are hesitant about integrating new technology into existing processes. The initial expense is of particular concern, especially for the container industry, which operates on a shallow margin. In addition, many of these innovative technologies don’t appear accessible, and beyond that, there is concern about the complexity of ML and AI and support being unavailable at sea.

Are these legitimate concerns? Are traditional methods of shipping management a better solution in the long run, or is it time for companies to harness the power of technology to overcome port congesting and untangle logistics knots?

Let’s examine how the latest advancements in maritime technology are improving the industry.


Maritime Solutions for Better Storage Planning

In their report, The Economic Times stresses the need for bigger, better tech solutions in shipping. India’s maritime industry desperately needs newer technology to optimise its current processes. In India, a ship’s average turnaround time (ATT) is 22 days, whereas, in China, the average is five days.

The cycle time of Indian cargo is lacking and has rendered the industry uncompetitive on a global scale. The capacity of all major and minor ports in India is minimal and needs to be increased. However, this is a considerable issue to remediate, and optimising the stowage planning and other processes is the best way to achieve efficiency in the interim.

Many variables must be considered to optimise the stowage planning process and minimise the time at port. Time at port depends on the number of containers, available cranes and their productivity rate, rows, and container stowage; all of these aspects require careful planning and execution. 

The Economic Times mentions how SONATA brings stability, cost reduction, and time savings to the shipping industry. Using advanced algorithms, SONATA cuts port planning time from 16 hours to 40 minutes. Stowage planning, therefore, takes 1/16th the time it usually would.

SONATA reduces the complexity of the planning process and brings much-needed calm to shipping’s chaotic waters while maximising productivity and increasing revenue for maritime companies in India and globally.

“Normally, a planner takes four to five hours to plan the placement of containers on a ship. We have an algorithm that does stowage planning in less than 15 minutes,” says Mohit Oberoi, Director of Solverminds.




The Future is Automated

In their article on Indian tech solutions shaping the future of the maritime industry, The Economic Times investigates current challenges in the maritime industry and ground-breaking solutions offered by new technology, including line optimising products like SONATA.

Mohit Oberoi, Director of Solverminds, steers the development of software products like SONATA to create a better future using next-generation, cloud-based, AI-enabled technology.

However, new technologies fail to convince those companies who continue to favour traditional, manual methods for navigating these processes. This begs the question: why?

Machines sometimes cannot communicate in ways that mariners find useful, and because technological processes can be complicated, they often have to perform the integration work themselves. What developers of new-age technology choose to display on screens and integrate into existing systems is not always what mariners would opt for, and sometimes they lack the data they need.

The fear surrounding advancements in AI prevents multiple industries, including the maritime industry, from adopting new tech. While change is unnerving, and the concerns voiced by those who favour traditional processes are understandable, the benefits of technology-integrated operations ultimately outweigh the cons. Let’s look at those benefits.


The Benefits of Technology in the Maritime Industry

The Economic Times reports that Solverminds promises to “revolutionise stowage planning.” Indeed, automated technology simplifies existing processes and boosts time efficiency by providing cargo tracking and stowage planning solutions, improving turnaround time, and lowering fuel consumption.


One: Technology Benefits Mariners

SONATA is designed to be user-friendly and save mariners the stress of executing their processes manually. This container stowage planning tool considers multiple constraints and calculates optimal stowage plans, reducing the ship’s time at port by giving mariners all the tools and information they need to perform their jobs seamlessly.

By offering the full automation of segregation and close packing of Dangerous Goods, SONATA eliminates container over stows, excessive vessel stresses, and lashing errors to streamline operations in a way that benefits mariners.

Challenges such as limited capacity in certain ports lead to consequences such as port congestion, which can be difficult to mitigate under time pressure. Solverminds’ technology solutions mean that if a ship is delayed at the port, a company can change their port rotation, minimise its fuel costs, and save time for the mariner. Solverminds offers real-time data to allow changes can be made when issues arise, thus reducing frustration for everyone involved.


Two: Tracking Boosts Customer Satisfaction

With the rise of eCommerce, customers expect more from stakeholders and logistics companies in terms of demonstrating reliability and consistency and formulating long-term relationships. At this point, it is crucial to rethink and amend the global supply chain and its systems.

Technology also provides relevant solutions to this challenge, forecasting and preventing delays and disruptions in real-time and allowing companies to communicate with clients timeously. In addition, container tracking allows agencies, clients, and other relevant parties to trace their goods and get notified of the expected delivery time. This cloud-based process ensures that customers receive clear, reliable information and the reassurance they need.


The Best Maritime Solutions for Your Company

Every shipping company struggles to maximise and streamline stowage operations; a centralised planning system simplifies their existing operations.

SONATA offers a solution to give you:

  • Easy documentation of appraisal insights.
  • Effective operation planning and data uploads.
  • Detailed, flexible vessel profiling tools.
  • Technical stowage plan creation.
  • Stowage plan quality index monitoring,

Easy access to vessel capacity information, container data, stability, strength calculations, and stress and lashing force conditions make process planning and execution less stressful.

This stowage planning management tool also enables the creation of optimal stowage plans that comply with industry-defined standards. You can reduce port time and optimise vessel usage with plans tailored to each vessel by using features that consider numerous variables (such as stowage constraints, hazardous cargo, and other priority containers).

“At Solverminds, we are committed to creating sustainable and innovative solutions to the challenges facing our clients in the Maritime industry,” says Mohit Oberoi.


Optimise Your Stowage Planning Processes Today

Are you ready to improve your existing processes? Use your resources to their full potential by training your vessel planners and boosting staff morale.

Once your team has taken initiative, Solverminds offers a quality assessment of the stowage plans created by your team before they are executed. Streamline your maritime processes with SONATA today. Cover all your bases with Solverminds Vessel Manual Plan (Stowage Plan) for better stowage planning and visibility, flawless execution of cargo management, and optimal vessel usage.


Book a consultation with us to learn more about how we can help you move confidently into the future, assured of your stowage plan’s success.


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