Information platform makes transport on inland waterways easier to plan

AutonomSOW II research project successfully completed

Over a period of 36 months, six partners from industry, associations and research have developed and tested a digital information platform, the aim of which is to facilitate the planning of transport processes on waterways. The platform derives important information from waterway, traffic and transport process data for the efficient integration of the waterway into multimodal transport processes and makes it automatically available to the players involved in the transport process via various media. The research project was funded by the Federal Ministry for Digital and Transport as part of the mFUND innovation initiative with around 1.5 million euros.

On the 29th November 2023, the project consortium consisting of Alberding GmbH (consortium leader), Berliner Hafen- und Lagerhausgesellschaft mbH (BEHALA) , the Federation of German Inland Ports (BÖB Bundesverband Öffentlicher Binnenhäfen e. V.), the Department of Design and Operation of Maritime Systems at the Technical University of Berlin (TU Berlin), the Institute of Communication and Navigation of the German Aerospace Center (DLR) and LUTRA GmbH (Port of Königs Wusterhausen) presented the results of the project at the 6th meeting of the BinSmart accompanying research group. More than 40 interested parties from business, science, associations and administration took part in the closing event in Berlin's Westhafen harbour.

In his welcome address, project manager Jürgen Alberding emphasised the importance of the interdisciplinary composition of the project consortium for the success of the project: „The involvement of the ports in Berlin and Königs Wusterhausen as well as the Federation of German Inland Ports meant that requirements from day-to-day practice could be incorporated into the developments. The research partners DLR and TU Berlin contributed their scientific expertise to the collection of real-time data from the waterway. As a technology company in the field of software and system solutions, we realised the information platform.“

Jürgen Alberding also emphasised: „The new information platform brings together heterogeneous data and provides users with a flexible tool for voyage planning. The voyage is planned in detail depending on ship dimensions, cargo and lighter utilisation. The integration of lock opening times and notices to skippers means that current changes to the navigability of the waterway are taken into account.“

Afterwards, the project partners presented their research results and the possible applications of the information platform. Finally, questions from the participants were answered and future developments were discussed. Together with the Federal Waterways Engineering and Research Institute (BAW), Alberding GmbH plans to further develop the RUBIN information platform in the mFUND project with regard to traffic forecasts and discharge depths. The focus will be on traffic on the Rhine and the Wesel-Datteln canal.

The detailed press release on the completion of the project can be downloaded here.

Interested parties can test the platform on request. For test access please contact Jörg Zimmermann at zimmermann@alberding.eu. More information about the project can be found at www.autonomsow.de.