High Tech Surveys Becoming Norm for RINA


“As a class society we are investing significantly in the new role of the surveyor,” said Simone Manca, marine technical support manager, heading up RINA’s Passenger Ship Centre of Excellence in Hamburg.

That new role is heavy in not only  looking at big data, but at providing RINA’s survey team with the latest gadgets to utilize – drones, remotely operated vehicles and other high-tech tools to carry out class surveys and other key inspections, according to the 2019 Drydocking and Refurbishment Report by Cruise Industry News.

“Surveys are changing a bit as compared to the past,” Manca noted. “We are working on remote inspection techniques using drones, divers and other remotely-operated tools that collect information for the surveyor.”

Those tools help RINA take measurements or readings in areas not easily accessible, for instance.

“It is a new era for inspections,” Manca said.

A standard class certification is valid for five years, and is renewed over a selected time period by one or two surveyors checking everything from fire doors to hull integrity, said Manca.

“That is a renewal survey and is fundamental,” he said. “That is the moment in which the class society says the ship is eligible to have a new class period and sail for another five years.”

During that five-year time, there is also a key intermediate survey, as well as various other surveys relating to key equipment aboard the vessel. Over the five years, there are also two so-called “bottom” surveys, one of which can take place with the ship in water.

For cruise ships, Manca said that lines were continuously monitored by various authorities, ranging from coast guards to port state control, flag states, class societies and other regulatory bodies – meaning there wasn’t generally a common deficient area.

"Problems can come from lack of maintenance,” he said, “but in the cruise sector, the maintenance is well managed. The lines are investing a lot.”

Big trends today in the refit market see the installation of ballast water treatment systems, exhaust gas cleaning, and more reliance on big data to predict lifecycle maintenance and costs.


Go inside the world of cruise ship drydocking and refurbishment with the 2019 Cruise Industry News Drydocking and Refurbishment Reportpresenting a 100-page overview of the $3 billion annual cruise ship drydock and refit market including a full 2019, 2020, 2021 estimated drydocking scheduled based on available data and research.

The report offers interviews with key drydocking executives from cruise lines, suppliers and shipyards, as well as case studies, trend reports and much more. 

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