CoVadem: inland shipping sector converts real-time data into added value for the environment

Published: 8 December 2016

Inland vessels are being transformed into 'high-tech' data collectors. As they sail, they will collect real-time data about fuel consumption, water depths and clearance heights that will allow them to decide exactly how much cargo they can transport. In this way, the vessels will be used more efficiently and carbon emissions will be reduced, fulfilling an important objective of the Green Deal. In addition, the vessels will collect data about the bed, water levels and currents that can be used to maintain the waterways and for water management. The Co2Vadem+ project is being launched now thanks to funding channelled through the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) and the inland shipping sector itself.

The total investment of 1.2 million euros for Co2Vadem+ is now in place. With an investment of more than 600,000 euros, the sector itself is playing an important role but it can earn that investment back if approximately 250 ships participate in the project. And that is the goal. So it is important to increase, in the near future, the number of vessels collecting data. Vessels that take part will be provided with the digital tools needed in the next two years to monitor fuel consumption and predict water depths/clearance heights.


A dashboard will provide information about e.g. the fuel consumption and predict water depths/clearance heights.


But it is not only the inland shipping sector that benefits. Maintaining the waterways depends crucially on information about the beds. The data from Co2Vadem+ can, in combination with river models, help river managers and dredgers to identify beforehand the locations where dredging is needed. That saves costs and allows maintenance work to be tendered out in smarter ways.


The Co2Vadem+ project is a consortium involving Deltares (as lead partner) and MARIN. It includes, alongside the regular partners Autena Marine and Bureau Telematica Binnenvaart, Danser Group, NPRC, Heuvelman Groep, Shipping Factory, ThyssenKrupp Veerhaven, BLN Schuttevaer, Delft University of Technology and Rijkswaterstaat.

Co2Vadem+ is a part of the CoVadem project, an initiative of MARIN, Deltares, Autena Marine and Bureau Telematica Binnenvaart Telematics. The overall project has been in place for some time now and it includes more than 50 participants from the inland shipping sector. CoVadem is supported by BLN, the trade association for inland shipping. MARIN is responsible for the overall coordination of CoVadem.