Bourbon and Bureau Veritas have signed a strategic partnership agreement to develop and deploy automation and real time monitoring fleet applications, developing digital technologies, while mitigating cyber risks, the companies said on Jan. 11.

First application of the partnership will be real-time verification of the dynamic positioning (DP) operations of the Bourbon fleet.

The partnership will thus deliver advanced automation of dynamic positioning systems to enable improvement of DP operational safety through real-time advisory tools for bridge operators and remote support for onshore teams; streamlining of onboard organization leading to potential reduction of manning; and a reduction in fuel and DP maintenance costs.

A pilot has been implemented on the Bourbon Explorer 508 operating in Trinidad waters. Developed with Kongsberg Maritime, already a strategic partner of Bourbon, it is certified by Bureau Veritas. It collects data from the DP system and drives the development of novel decision-making and verification applications for both offshore crew and onshore support teams.

According to Bourbon, another vital element of the project is addressing cyber security threats. APSYS, an Airbus company specialized in product security, is helping in identifying and mitigating risks linked to data collection and communication between Bourbon’s vessels and onshore infrastructure.

Based on this risk assessment relying on best practices from APSYS’s aerospace experience, Bureau Veritas is able to issue cyber security certification on products and class notations for ships meeting global industry security standards.

“We have decided to innovate with Bureau Veritas in the way we operate vessels in order to bring a response to this new cycle focused on operational excellence at optimum cost,” Gaël Bodénès, CEO of Bourbon, said.

“Streamlining work organization onboard vessels, this project will have a significant positive impact on our operations. In this digital era, we also have a common will to deploy innovative technological solutions offering tangible benefits to our customers.”

This partnership is part of Bourbon’s Smart shipping program, which seeks to optimize safety and reliability of vessels operations at optimum costs.

Bureau Veritas is providing classification of the connectivity systems, while both partners will address cyber security issues.