PortX, Helm Ink Strategic Partnership Pact

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

June 25, 2019

PortX (Rotterdam, Netherlands) and Helm Operations (Victoria, BC, Canada) announced that they have signed a new strategic partnership agreement to combine PortX’s cutting-edge AI-based port dispatching system, OptiPort, with Helm CONNECT, a leading harbor dispatching and operations software.

Already used in a number of ports around the globe, OptiPort dramatically improves the scheduling of harbour towage operations by using artificial intelligence to optimize vessel dispatch based on crew working hours, currents, tides, vessel characteristics, fuel consumption, and availability. Until now, it has been difficult for companies to manually calculate and account for these factors in a live environment. By using AI, OptiPort is able to dynamically optimize harbor schedules every three minutes, resulting in the most optimal and cost-effective dispatch schedules for any harbor or fleet.

Depending on the port, pilot studies using OptiPort have shown savings of greater than US$1 million annually per port by reducing fuel consumption and crew overtime while optimizing vessel dispatch to reduce chartering of third-party tugs. Together, these factors allow for a savings of up to US$200,000 per tug on a yearly basis.  

As part of the agreement, Helm Operations will incorporate OptiPort to provide a new advanced version of its Helm CONNECT platform, which provides vessel dispatch and operations software for many of the world’s largest harbor docking fleets. Using Helm CONNECT Jobs, powered by OptiPort’s AI engine, users will receive automated suggestions on the best towing vessel, departure time, and running speed based on the current schedule. This simplifies the dispatch management process and greatly reduces fuel costs and overtime costs while ensuring the optimal schedule for harbor operators.


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