In order to produce more advanced cruise liners, companies need solutions that can help boost innovation while fostering efficiency throughout a ship’s life cycle. World Cruise Industry Review speaks to Alain Houard, marine and offshore industry vice-president at Dassault Systèmes, about how the company’s solutions, powered by the 3DEXPERIENCE platform, help shipyards address the increasingly complex development processes of cruise liners.

How can Dassault Systèmes’ solutions benefit the cruise industry?

Alain Houard: Modern cruise ships are complex, large-scale projects. Managing this complexity while ensuring high standards requires dedicated solutions that can help harness the power of collaborative innovation while promoting efficiency throughout the ship design and production process. We’re always looking for ways to boost our customers’ ability to innovate, ensuring that shipyards can deliver ships that stand out while maintaining time and budget constraints, and help their cruise-line customers offer passengers a memorable experience.

We aim to empower collaborative innovation through a range of ‘industry solution experiences’ powered by the 3DEXPERIENCE platform: a business platform that provides integration for design, engineering, simulation and intelligence in a single collaborative, interactive environment. With the On Time to Sea, Designed for Sea and Optimized Production for Sea experiences, we provide a unified digital environment with which to manage and monitor the entire life cycle of a ship, from its initial design to its construction and operation.

How did the 3DEXPERIENCE platform come about and how is it benefitting clients?

3DEXPERIENCE is a business strategy and a business experience platform that offers integrated end-to-end scientific, engineering, manufacturing and business capabilities and services. For 30 years, we have helped our industrial partners transform their product-related processes. Having become a leader in the field of product life-cycle management, we realised the need to expand virtual universes beyond this to help our customers create delightful experiences for their customers.

The aim changed from simply having the tools to create and build the product: it became having the ability to simulate the products in their environments, to see what the ‘product in life’ would be. With this shift, we transformed from application development to providing a collaborative business platform.

The 3DEXPERIENCE platform is a catalyst for innovation. It connects all organisations within an enterprise (from marketing to engineering) and outside it (including owners, operators, suppliers and classification societies), enabling any stakeholder to participate in the innovation process and contribute to drive value for the end consumer. It manages (and makes searchable) all of a project’s information, presenting it in a graphic and easy-to-read way so that all team members know what is happening, anytime and anywhere. It also allows business decision-makers to access data on key performance indicators in real time so they can make informed decisions.

What are the biggest challenges cruise liners face when they are trying to automate and optimise their systems?

The primary concerns come from the fact that a cruise liner is effectively a floating luxury hotel; the number of systems that keep one running – and the complexity of these – is steadily increasing. Automation, sensors and connected systems are increasingly being deployed to optimise operating costs, safety and decision-making.

Our solutions address the fact that, in the cruise industry, you need to solve gigantic puzzles. Operators need to be able to automate lengthy, mostly manual activities. For example, crew planning and scheduling based on a manual approach is time-consuming, leaving no room for optimisation. We now have a solution called Quintiq that is able to incorporate all the complex regulations and requirements into the planning environment, eliminating the need for crew planners to spend vast amounts of time doing so manually. It also helps optimise plans, maximising the productivity and performance of a crew.

What environmental challenges can Dassault Systèmes’ solutions assist the cruise industry with?

Regulations are constantly being refined in the marine and offshore industry, as new incidents occur and the pressure to be more environmentally responsible grows. Liners need to look at the sustainable economy, address the reduction of emissions and take into account ballast water release at harbours, which can create a lot of pollution and destroy local marine life.

Our goal at Dassault Systèmes is to help our clients see what their product will be in the context of the wider environment. The 3DEXPERIENCE platform provides holistic 3D experiences that enable users to imagine sustainable innovations. We are committed to using our solutions to better understand and simulate how products, nature and life can interact in harmony.