Rijkswaterstaat is researching how they can facilitate managing shipping traffic in the Dutch national waterways in the future by using modern techniques. The Route Planner is part of this Traffic Management Center of the Future (Verkeerscentrale van Morgen, VCM).
Corridor-orientated control and supervision
The Route Planner offers a current overview of the routes that the ships are taking and plans the filling of the lock chambers adjusted to the amount of traffic. The Route Planner also makes a prognosis of the waterways traffic situation for a period of six hours and will refresh every six minutes. The simulation model uses skipper's information such as route and cargo data, the actual location of the ship and the navigable waterway models including any obstacles. With this input, the Route Planner will first assess whether the ship can pass all the obstacles and/or if there are any hindrances or incidents along the route. After that, the Route Planner will simulate the ship's journey together with all the other traffic.
True asset for shipping traffic
The skipper will implement his journey digitally and can check in the prognosis whether his planning can be done. He also already knows that he will have to wait an hour before he is allowed to pass through the lock, so he can decide to adjust his speed and therefore save fuel. Or he can even adjust his planning accordingly.
The Route Planner supports the controller by suggesting what to do for a particular planning that involves passing a lock chamber. The controller can either take the suggestions on board or change them. The Route Planner takes the decisions of the controller has made into account as a starting point for a future calculation. This way, the controller will always have the final responsibility for a planning that involves passing a lock chamber.
The Route Planner is constructed by a consortium of three parties. TNO made the simulation models that were translated into software by DAT.Mobility. Technolution functions as general contractor of all systems. This means that we make sure that the model receives the right data, but also that it is delivered in the right format to Rijkswaterstaat.
Due to our years of experience, we have a lot of substantive knowledge of the activities and systems of both Rijkswaterstaat and the shipping traffic. With the Route Planner, a fitting solution that matching any activities of both the professional shipping market and Rijkswaterstaat is easly achieved.