Both the Hamburg and Seattle centers provide real-time support for the company's 102-ship fleet. A third center will be added to the global network later this year when construction is scheduled for completion on a facility at the company’s Miami headquarters.
The new Fleet Operations Centers use the latest tracking and data-analysis platform that enables real-time information sharing among Carnival Corp. ships and specialized onshore teams that support fleet operations. The proprietary system significantly improves communication from ship to shore, providing new capabilities for enhancing the safe passage of ships at sea while improving operational efficiencies and supporting overall environmental initiatives at Carnival Corp.
The system, which initially captures thousands of data points and provides real-time analytics for 28 distinct parameters for navigational safety from each ship, focuses on various strategic areas to optimize safety, efficiency and overall fleet performance.
Those include nautical operations and safety, including the capability to see real-time radar visuals, stability conditions, automation, the Safety Management and Command System, and webcams from each ship, along with GPS location, routing, ship conditions and weather data.
Another strategic area is procedural optimization and efficiency, including speeds, navigational data and engine conditions. And sustainability is a third strategic area, including fuel and energy usage, emissions levels, water and waste management.
'Our teams have done a remarkable job in developing the most sophisticated and capable system in the cruise and commercial maritime industry for taking safety management to a completely new level, overcoming the hurdles faced with ships sailing in the middle of oceans around the world,' said Bill Burke, chief maritime officer for Carnival Corp. and a retired US Navy vice admiral.
'With our new operations centers running our proprietary technology, both our ship and shoreside teams have greater than ever ability to ensure we are operating at safety levels that far exceed industry standards, Burke added. 'We can now also access and analyze data that can significantly increase the operational efficiency of our ships, which is another major benefit.'
Using cloud-based technology from Microsoft, this new system—dubbed 'Neptune'—has been in use at the Carnival Maritime Fleet Operations Center in Hamburg, as announced in October 2015. Carnival Corp. has been piloting the system with its European cruise brands in Hamburg and Southampton. Based on the system’s success, the company will continue rolling it out this year to further increase the monitoring capability of its ships sailing in the US and Caribbean, through its Fleet Operation Centers in Miami and Seattle.
The new Fleet Operations Centers will provide an additional layer of support, where the shore-based analytics system will automatically generate alerts to help provide support in addressing any potential safety or weather-related issues across the fleet. Moving forward, the system’s ability to process and analyze big data in real time will enable Carnival Corp. and its brands to do predictive analysis with the potential to further improve safety and operations.
The implementation of the advanced support system is aligned with the company’s Arison Maritime Center, home of its Center for Simulator Maritime Training Academy, or CSMART Academy, the maritime training, professional development and research facility in Almere, just outside Amsterdam. The CSMART Academy provides some 6,500 deck and technical officers from the company’s 10 global brands with extensive annual training programs.