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ABS issues guidance notes on smart technology

American classification society ABS has issued guidance notes on the implementation of smart technology for owners, operators and equipment manufacturers in the marine and offshore industries.

The guidance notes aim to provide a goal-based framework for those companies that are interested in the potential of technology to improve their business operations but unsure where to begin.

“Everybody in maritime and offshore is looking to use some form of technology to run their business better, the question is how do you do that?” Derek Novak, senior vice president engineering and technology ABS told Seatrade Maritime News.

“The publication of the smart functionality guide is intended to help customers take technology and apply it in their business in a safe and effective manner. Picking the right goal is key, then you look to see how you can leverage technology to meet that goal.”

In the first quarter of 2019, ABS will publish guides with class notations for smart structures and machinery. This will include the requirements for vendor component pre-qualification.

ABS is currently working with Finland’s Wartsila and other technology vendors to issue the first sets of pre-qualification for smart technology.

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“Our aim is to help companies introduce technology without reducing overall safety of the vessel or asset,” said Novak.

Novak sees smart technology transforming the business of class societies. Instead of following the traditional maintenance and inspection timetables, he said classification in the future will be less prescriptive and more focused on the actual condition of the vessel.

Earlier this year, ABS began a 24-month project with the US Navy's Military Sealift Command to trial condition-based class asset management.

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