Utrecht-based startup Sensing360 and Damen Shipyards Group have formed a partnership to improve the safety, efficiency and sustainability of ships through advanced sensor technology. Sensing360 specialises in sensor technology based on photonics.

Photonics is about the interaction between light and electronics. Up to twenty of these optical sensors can be incorporated into fibre-optic cables no thicker than a human hair. The great advantage of this is that data can also be collected in places that are difficult to reach or dangerous.

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Wind turbines and winches

‘The collaboration with Damen means we can now also deploy this technology — which we already use extensively in wind turbines — on board ships. For example, we are looking at deploying them in winches and other rotating parts,’ explains Georgo Angelis, Sensing360’s CEO. ‘This is a step forward we are taking together to make the maritime sector safer, more efficient and sustainable.’

Sensing360 will also support the development of algorithm solutions that can analyse and interpret data from the sensors to optimise the operational performance of the Damen vessels.

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Additional parameters

Jasper Schuringa, Head of Corporate Venturing at Damen: ‘The data and thus the insights gathered by photonic sensors are of crucial value to our customers. They also offer opportunities for new business models and support technological developments, such as remote control and automated operations. Through Triton, our “connected vessel platform”, information from many thousands of data points and sensors is collected to provide an overall view of the ship’s performance indicators. So thanks to this collaboration, we can start adding quite a few more parameters to that. It is a great example of the growing trend of cooperation between startups and established companies to create synergies and generate value together.’

Picture: A fibre optic sensor.

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