The Nautical Institute launched its latest book to support aspiring dynamic positioning operators (DPOs) and those more experienced who may want to refresh their skills or move their career into other areas of the industry.
Captain Robert McCabe FNI, President of The Nautical Institute, said “this book reflects the new standards; supports DP training and best practice and provides advice to those who may be experienced in some, but not all, activities. The book takes its part in the Institute’s drive to ensure that the maritime industry continues to maintain appropriate levels of professional development based upon knowledge, skills, experience and attitude within the Institute’s certificated DPO community.
“The launch of The DP Operator’s Handbook second edition is a timely one as the shipping industry becomes more sophisticated in its use of DP. Although DP assisted vessels have been with us for 50 years and principles have changed very little, vessels get ever larger and usage is rising as more in the maritime industry are seeing the benefits of this system. DP is now seen on vessels outside the offshore sector where it was first developed – in many areas of commercial activity, such as cruise ships and military craft. This is reflected in the uptake of the maritime industry’s DP certification, which is managed by The Nautical Institute,” Captain McCabe continued.
“When the first edition of this book was conceived there were about 6,000 DP operators in the industry with certificates to prove they had met the industry standards. Today there are over 27,000 and last year alone The Nautical Institute issued more than 3,000 certificates on behalf of the industry.”
To cope with this demand, the Institute invested in expanding the team and a new online area – the Alexis Platform (www.nialexisplatform.org) – as the single access point for the scheme. The new web platform and the new book coincide with the implementation of changes to the DP training scheme and standards, which were agreed by industry following a worldwide comprehensive review of training needs in 2013.
“The Institute’s training scheme is recognized by the industry as the learning route to becoming a certificated DPO. The scheme has continued to evolve to meet the needs of industry which requires competent and experienced DPOs to serve on its vessels,” added Captain McCabe.
The book was written by Captain David Bray FNI together with co-authors Captain Glenn Fiander, Captain John Daniels and Captain Dane Foster MNI.
Captain Bray commented: “The technology related to DP has developed very quickly, and the learning curve has been steep. As the number of personnel involved in DP operations has increased, a huge base of expertise and experience has built up. Nevertheless, a large number of personnel are new to DP techniques, and training is a major requirement within the DP vessel industry.
“The Nautical Institute has been involved with DPO training and qualifications from the beginning. Our training scheme for DPOs is accepted worldwide and shore-based training centers all over the world provide elements of training approved and accredited to a common high standard.
“This handbook is aimed at those who may be learning DP systems after serving on more conventional vessels, and it highlights some of the pitfalls and problems that may be experienced. It does not attempt to replace the handbooks supplied by system manufacturers, nor does it go into great detail on individual manufacturers’ systems. In providing an overview of the topic, the aim is to lead the reader into further study and discussion, supplemented by references to further reading.”