Charting the Course Ahead: The Future of AI in Marine Cargo Survey Businesses

The marine industry has long relied on the expertise and knowledge of cargo surveyors to ensure the safe and efficient transport of goods across the world’s oceans. In today’s rapidly evolving information age, knowledge and expertise is not just power—it is a strategic asset that drives innovation, growth, and competitive advantage. As marine survey businesses navigate an increasingly complex landscape, the integration of artificial intelligence (AI) has the potential to revolutionise the way knowledge is harnessed, analysed and applied across all industries, and the marine survey industry is no different.

The foundation of knowledge businesses – such as marine surveying- lies in the ability to efficiently access, organise, and interpret vast amounts of data and information and then use that data and information productively and profitably. AI technologies, such as natural language processing, machine learning and semantic analysis are empowering organizations to use data and extract meaningful insights from unstructured data sources such as text documents, research papers and online content. Continue reading “Charting the Course Ahead: The Future of AI in Marine Cargo Survey Businesses”

The securing of containers on deck on a container ship

There are six different ways in which ships move in the sea, primarily pitching, heaving and rolling.

Lateral rolling motion represents the greatest challenge for stacks of containers. If containers are to be transported safely on the deck of a container vessel, they must be firmly connected to the ship. This is done with the aid of what are known as twistlocks. These twistlocks are inserted into the corner castings of the containers. These corner castings have elongated holes in which the rotating lug of the twistlock engages, locking the containerstogether. In addition, the bottom two layers of the stacked containers are connected to the ship with lashing rods. Initially, it was common practice to stow stacks of containers on deck in such a way that the individual stacks were connected to each other Continue reading “The securing of containers on deck on a container ship”

Consistent testing standards are vital to ensure ballast water compliance

Carried in ships’ ballast waters, invasive aquatic species have had a significant economic impact throughout the world. Specific ballast discharge events have been held responsible for disasters such as outbreaks of deadly disease, complete collapse Continue reading “Consistent testing standards are vital to ensure ballast water compliance”

The Human Side

When the Titanic sank in 1912, many crewmembers went down with the ship so that passengers could survive. When the cruise ship Oceanos foundered off the coast of South Africa in August of 1991, most of the crew – including the Master – abandoned the vessel, leaving the passengers to fend for themselves. In 2012, after running his ship onto the rocks, Captain Francesco Schettino of the Costa Concordia gained infamy and imprisonment when he claimed he fell into a lifeboat and lost consciousness, leaving his passengers and most of his crew behind. Continue reading “The Human Side”

Introducing InspectX – A New Tool for the Old School

Based in the sunshine state of Florida, second generation marine surveyor, Craig Norton, is the President of InspectX. A SAMS® Accredited Marine Surveyor, RYA 200 ton Yachtmaster Offshore and MCA Y3 Chief Engineer, he decided he was fed up of duplicating his work when writing his reports, collecting the evidence in the field only to come home to have to make sense of his scribbled notes so he could write his report. His thought process led him to search for a solution so that a report could be generated whilst doing the survey to save those many hours in front of a laptop once home. The result is InspectX, a programme designed for surveyors by surveyors.

Continue reading “Introducing InspectX – A New Tool for the Old School”

The Expected Life Span of Yacht Enclosures

What is the expected life span of an enclosure? There are a lot of variances, and this article is prepared to give you the information needed to determine the life of a given enclosure.

Soft Enclosures

The least expensive of boats will typically have roll vinyl curtains. These are made from a clear pvc material that typically comes 51” wide on a roll and can be .015, .020 or .030 in thickness. It is soft and the life span is very short and unremarkable.

Better boats may have pressed polished sheets. These are made using the roll vinyl Continue reading “The Expected Life Span of Yacht Enclosures”

The risk of liquefaction from nickel ore cargo remains high

Nickel ore liquefaction remains a key point of concern for shipowners and charterers, argues Janice Dao Yeung Yeung, Senior Claims Executive, Lawyer, Skuld P&I Club, who has provided a detailed analysis of the regulatory obligations surrounding the nickel ore cargo from the Philippines and Indonesia for masters, charterers, owners, shippers, as well as insurers.

Liquefaction risks of nickel ore cargoes from Indonesia and the Philippines have been a long-standing prominent issue which require constant vigilance and review by shipowners and charterers.

Since 2010, the liquefaction of nickel ore cargoes has caused the capsize of seven vessels. The recent capsize of MV Emerald Star in October 2017 once again demonstrated the importance of strict compliance with the IMSBC Code (2016 edition) and the other relevant international conventions. Continue reading “The risk of liquefaction from nickel ore cargo remains high”

Hidden benefits of a shipboard asbestos survey

Shipboard asbestos survey
Shipboard asbestos survey

Inventory of Hazardous Materials (IHM) surveys, when carried out correctly, can have a range of unexpected benefits for ship owners. A recent experience not only highlights the value to ship owners of having an approved inventory for their vessels, but also reaffirms the need to ensure that surveys are undertaken correctly.

Hazardous materials consultancy Lucion Marine was appointed to assist a major cruise line with work on a 2008-built cruise vessel. In this particular case a shipyard, on a pre-refit visit, claimed that an area where a new scrubber installation was planned contained asbestos in the bulkhead fire insulation. Continue reading “Hidden benefits of a shipboard asbestos survey”

The role of the marine surveyor – a P&I club’s perspective

…The ship wherein Theseus {ref.2} and the youth of Athens returned had 30 oars, and was preserved by the Athenians down even to the time of Demetrius Phalereus for they took away the old planks as they decayed, putting in new and stronger timber in their place…

per Plutarch in Life of Theseus {ref.3}

Like their predecessors of ancient times, the marine surveyors of today inspect and make recommendations in respect of the state of seaworthiness (or lack thereof) of a vessel. Unlike their predecessors, and unsurprisingly, their role has expanded. Continue reading “The role of the marine surveyor – a P&I club’s perspective”

Micro ROVs enablers for Marine Surveyors

An Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) operates independently from the ship and has no connecting cables while ROVs are connected to an operator on the surface host ship by a load-carrying umbilical cable which provides communication and control.

A Remotely Operated underwater Vehicle (ROV) is a tethered underwater mobile device. ROVs are unoccupied, highly maneuverable, and operated by a Continue reading “Micro ROVs enablers for Marine Surveyors”

Load measurement for validation and data collection

Load sensors and data gathering have been a familiar part of the sport going back to the late era of IOR – in particular the final generation of IOR supermaxis like Bill Koch’s data-muncher Matador3. Today the technology is prevalent from the America’s Cup to big offshore trimarans to IMOCA, VO65s and including most of the modern superyacht fleet. The demand for data from raceboats is continually increasing – but it’s a form of technology that to date has been relatively inaccessible to the mainstream sailor, not to mention many designers and builders. Continue reading “Load measurement for validation and data collection”

Wooden Boats: How to survey


How to survey wooden boats: Image 1
How to survey wooden boats: Image 1

You are now considering how to survey wooden boats; whether you have been involved in the marine industry all your life or you have come to marine surveying through a career-change having completed and passed the IIMS Diploma Course. If so, you should be prepared to engross yourself in the technology and language of wooden boats construction and timber technology. There are several ways in which you are able to achieve this. If you have not been involved in building wooden boats before becoming a surveyor, one option for learning the required practical skills and complex terminology is to enrol on one of the excellent courses at various centres which have been established around the UK. Continue reading “Wooden Boats: How to survey”

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