PortX and Helm sign strategic partnership agreement

Ship tug in Aukland. Credit: SEAPIX/Trevor Coppock

A port optimisation solutions company, PortX, has signed a strategic partnership agreement with software developer Helm Operations to combine systems and develop an AI-assisted dispatching tool to optimize towing operations.

The agreement will combine PortX’s AI-based port dispatching system, OptiPort, with Helm CONNECT, a harbour dispatching and operations software, provided by Helm Operations.

Currently in use in a number of ports around the globe, OptiPort aids with the scheduling of harbour towage operations by using artificial intelligence to optimise vessel dispatch based on crew working hours, currents, tides, vessel characteristics, fuel consumption, and availability.

Using Helm CONNECT Jobs, powered by OptiPort’s AI engine, users will receive automated suggestions on the best towing vessel, departure time, and running speed based on the current schedule. This simplifies the dispatch management process and aims to reduce fuel and overtime costs while ensuring the optimal schedule for harbour operators.

Vincent van Os, managing director of PortX, commented, “By combining our OptiPort Dynamic Port Asset Optimisation software with Helm CONNECT, we can help dispatchers and harbour operators around the world make better decisions on the use of their fleet. With the integration work that we have done with Helm, implementation of OptiPort can be done extremely quickly, without adding additional hardware on the vessels or the dispatch control room. This leads to real cost savings that can improve operators’ bottom lines almost immediately upon implementation.”