Landmark agreement cements collaboration to integrate and enhance smart data solutions designed to make shipping safer and greener.

Tokyo-headquartered Weathernews Inc (WNI), the world’s largest private weather routing provider, has signed a strategic partnership agreement with Finland-based Wärtsilä Voyage that will enable the integration of WNI’s weather forecasting data and Optimum Ship Routeing (OSR) service with Wärtsilä’s products and solutions, thereby increasing navigational safety and supporting the decarbonization efforts of shipowners and operators.

Wartsila bridge system
Wartsila bridge system

Reducing risk

By automating navigation and route-planning functions with weather avoidance technology, owners can reduce risks and allow seafarers to concentrate on other operational requirements. WNI currently supports around 10,000 vessels worldwide fielding an unequalled number of specialist risk communicators and meteorologists to deliver advanced weather forecasting, risk analysis and routeing advice around the clock.

“We are tremendously excited about this partnership with such an important industry player. We look forward to a rewarding, long-term cooperation with Wärtsilä and in developing winning solutions in line with our shared goal to make shipping safer and more sustainable,” said Henrik Faurschou, Global Product and Market Strategy Leader at WNI.

“Sailing through bad weather has numerous downsides. Containers can get lost overboard, fuel consumption increases and schedules can be compromised. By having the fastest and most accurate advance warning of weather situations integrated into our navigational and voyage systems, these losses can be avoided. This is why this agreement with WNI is so important,” said Kay Dausendschoen, Head of Product, Fleet Operations Solutions & Optimisation, Wärtsilä Voyage.

FOS integration

Under the partnership agreement, WNI’s forecasting models can be integrated, for example, into Wärtsilä’s unique Fleet Operations Solution (FOS) service. FOS automatically optimises a ship’s route by providing the fullest and latest voyage data, at the same time keeping both the onboard and shore-based personnel informed and notified. The addition of frequent state-of-the-art weather information from WNI will make FOS even more effective in increasing navigational safety, reducing fuel consumption and optimizing the voyage leg.

The agreement will also likely enhance Wärtsilä’s complete voyage planning and optimization system Navi-Planner, which is connected through the ship’s electronic chart display and information system (ECDIS). Advanced WNI weather forecasting will also be incorporated into future sustainable systems and innovative solutions developed through the collaboration.

Enhanced functionality

The partnership will result in additional features, such as route overlays and charts, being developed once the WNI weather service has been fully integrated into the Wärtsilä systems. The aim is to boost safer navigation and reduce fuel consumption, which in turn will lessen emission levels and support shipping’s decarbonization ambitions.