Recognized as a key contributor at the annual Marine Technology Society (MTS) Dynamic Positioning (DP) conference in Houston, Texas, DNV GL’s experts addressed the ever-changing concerns of the industry and the new reality of “lower for longer” oil and gas prices.
This new reality reinforces the drive for innovation that improves efficiency and cost savings for the safe and sustainable long term. Referencing the event, Aleks Karlsen, Sr. Principal Specialist of DP Systems, DNV GL - Maritime acknowledged, “DP professionals attend to keep abreast of industry developments spurred by the volatility of the market. Challenged to improve, we are exploring innovative solutions to increase safety, reliability, and expand the efficiency of DP operations.”
Technology set to transform IPV
"As operators look for ways to reduce costs, technology is seen as an enabler,” stated Steven Cargill, Technical Authority for Dynamic Positioning at DNV GL – Noble Denton marine services. Cargill spoke about the practices for independent performance validation (IPV) for robust, resilient DP systems. “DNV GL is working with those implementing IPV and advanced analytics to enhance confidence in system integrity, discover patterns and make predictions. This data-centric focus unveils opportunities to improve reliability, and provides stakeholders with a means to manage risk in their assets and operations.”
Reflections on DNV GL’s standard for assessing the station keeping capabilities of DP vessels
During the MTS DP conference’s performance session, Karlsen and Luca Pivano, Principal Specialist DP Simulations, Marine Cybernetics Advisory at DNV GL - Maritime, offered reflections on the upgrades planned for the standard based on customer’s use and feedback.
Pivano detailed, “The standard (DNV GL ST-0111) was developed to satisfy the demand for a new standard that accounts for advances in technology while providing reliable data to support owners, operators, and other stakeholders in selecting, assessing, and benchmarking vessels.” He continued, “Today, My DNV GL offers an app that calculates DP station-keeping capability for Level 1 in DNV GL ST-0111. The success of the app triggered demand for the calculation and reporting of DP capability for Level 2 (with an anticipated release in Q4 2017), a more comprehensive quasi-static method, allowing for improved flexibility and project-specific adjustments compared to Level 1 and provides the possibility to add external forces (e.g., riser forces).”
DNV GL DPO certification scheme sets the bar
DNV GL co-chaired a conference workshop which sought to identify DP Operator (DPOs) competency gaps in order to deliver incident-free DP operations. Discussion included more effective training, assessments and certification guidelines to supplement the current training and certification schemes.
DNV GL’s certification scheme (DNV GL-RP-0007), released in 2012, addresses most of the concerns raised by the industry representatives, including:
- The need for a combination of sea time and simulator training for the proper competence development
- That the training center and the Certification body (not DNV GL) are independent and approved according to specific standards
- That the assessment and related certification is mission-based, related to specific DP modes or systems
- That new Standard for “Competence in dynamic positioning for key technical personnel” (ST-0123) was launched in March 2017, recognizing the importance of other involved personnel in this context
Improving the reliability of DP systems
“Throughout the conference, we witnessed an increased focus on training as well as roles and responsibilities of the DPOs. The competency of others involved, including engineering, electrical crew, and shore support, was clearly identified as an area which required review,” noted Morvan Le Dorven, DNV GL – Noble Denton marine services. He continued, “A more holistic approach to DP operations is required with the involvement of all stakeholders, new technologies, and innovation, such as remote monitoring and live support.”
Le Dorven added, “The quality and competency of Third Party FMEA services and DP operations manual providers must have robust quality assurance from within the organizations providing these services. Looking ahead, we believe that the practical application of FMEA and DP operations manuals should be delivered through more modern Technological Structure.”