Rotterdam, 10 July 2019 – Last week VSTEP held an Inland Simulation User Conference together with Maritieme Academie Harlingen. This event brought together inland shipping industry experts, training institutes, and entrepreneurs who had an opportunity to discuss the latest innovations of inland shipping and various applications of simulators within maritime industry.


On the 3rd of July the conference was held in Harlingen. The main goal of the event was to gather experts from various fields within the maritime industry to engage in open discussions regarding inland shipping. Scholars, entrepreneurs, innovators, training experts – all shared their knowledge and expertise.

The conference kicked off with VSTEP’ers Ties Klapwijk, Floris van Gessel and Steve Claes opening the event and introducing NAUTIS inland simulators that are designed specifically for radar navigation, communication, vessel handling training and examination. These simulators are fully compliant with European Standard for Qualification in Inland Navigation and were built alongside experts in the industry.

Following these talks, Arjen Mintjes, Director of Maritieme Academie Harlingen and President of the EDINNA Board, presented the academy and the exploitation of simulators for various training purposes. Roy Kok, founder of Smart-Ship then demonstrated conventional ship control using haptic interfaces and how it can be applied in the industry to make operations safer and more efficient.


Erik Rotteveel, Project Manager Transport and Shipping in MARIN (Maritime Research Institute Netherlands) introduced his research on the influence of inland vessel stern shape aspects on propulsive performance.

The morning session was closed by Vincent Wegener, entrepreneur and co-founder of Captain AI. Vincent introduced autonomous shipping solutions and its practical and technical applications in the foreseeable future of shipping. During the presentation, he highlighted the significance of simulators in the testing and training of their AI systems.

Pieter Zandhuis, Project Officer at Maritieme Academie Harlingen, opened the second part of the conference with a live demonstration of the inland simulators. Pieter showcased how they are used daily in their academy for training and examination. All the participants of the event had an opportunity to try out the simulators and re-create actual training.


VSTEP’s UX team then held a workshop regarding empathy mapping. During the workshop, event participants who have not used an inland simulator before, were given certain tasks to perform on a simulator and asked to map their thoughts and feelings regarding the software. This approach helps better understand user personas and identify their needs.

All the participants of the event were actively involved in the discussions, product demonstrations and the workshop. It was a great opportunity for industry members to share their knowledge in the field and discuss the future of inland shipping and simulation technology.


VSTEP makes sure that you are prepared for real-life situations with our leading solutions for simulation and virtual training. Our state-of-the-art products allow you to train your skills for every scenario possible in a practical, cost effective and sustainable way. We are a Dutch based and ISO9001:2015 certified company. Stay up-to-date about the developments at VSTEP by subscribing to our newsletter or follow us on Linkedin.

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