LL3 – EU IWT Network Resilience Mitigation Digital Twin App

EU IWT Network Resilience Mitigation Digital Twin App

The work in this LL3 will further develop and demonstrate a planning mitigation demonstrator app to boost modal shift (aka Blue Wave).

This platform will contribute to safe and efficient shipping, improve the logistic performance of inland navigation, and include strategies for increasing the capacity of resilient infrastructures during disruptive events.

The various parties in the logistics chain (skipper, terminal operator, forwarder, shipper) will have user-friendly, up-to-date insight into the status and progress of the transport.

Netherlands, Belgium, France, Germany and Austria
Corridor / Area
Netherlands, Belgium, France, Germany and Austria
100+ Barge Operators
10+ Infrastructure Managers
10+ Ports
10+ Shippers


The developed LL3 will address the specific situation on the East and South Corridor in The Netherlands. The Rhombus concept contains synchro modal solutions for the waterway system that connects Antwerp – Paris – Liege – Venlo – Nijmegen – Rotterdam. The following canals and rivers Albert canal, Scheldt –Seine – Meuse and Juliana canal and the river Waal comprise the Rhombus. These are the main arteries in the inland waterway system.

As such, this concept of the waterway system provides an agile concept as every point can still be reached in terms of calamities. Due to emission reduction targets, governments are pushing hard for modal shift in their policies for its prominent role in decreasing road congestion.

Although inland waterway transport’s full potential has yet to be utilised, reliability is a serious issue. Information about current water levels and forecasts, obstructions, and traffic on waterways and at locks/bridges are available but rarely used to increase reliability. For that it is crucial to have a seamless integration between the information and planning software and get proactive advice during the planning process.

News from Living Lab 3

March 2024

Living Lab 3 has the goal to expand the current platform, known as Blue Wave, by introducing an additional Planning and Mitigation Module. During the last 6 months, the Blue Wave route planner has been further developed to provide 7 different options that can assist users in adjusting their choices based on comparing several criteria that are important to them. 

Specifically, it provides the following options:

1) the most cost-efficient route
2) the route that the skipper can follow using a ship of standard size
3) the route that the skipper can use with smaller vessels
4) the shortest route in km
5) the route when all infrastructure manager messages are ignored
6) all bridges and locks are open and available on time
the skipper can start 3 hours later


Routes as presented in the route planner scheduling a vessel from Antwerp to Constanza


The route planner will be combined with a terminal planning module. During the last six months, the real-time information from terminals on disruptions and weather conditions, combined with information on mitigation strategies, was applied to develop a scheduling algorithm. The algorithm assists terminals in making a plan to mitigate the effects of disruptions and delays.

During 2024, the route planner and the terminal planning modules will be refined and merged into one module. Compared to other solutions offered in the market, the ReNEW Planning and Mitigation Module offers skippers the ability to choose the best route between seven different alternatives. It also includes a planning module that helps terminals plan vessels’ arrivals in a way that eliminates possible delays.


Test trajectories meeting in the Port of Zeeland


September 2023

LL3 aims to help inland waterways (IWW) make more resilient route planning by enriching an already existing route planning and scheduling platform “Blue Wave” with an algorithm that replans IWW services in real-time to mitigate the effects of disruptions in environmental conditions (bad weather, low water levels), delays in terminals and other unforeseen effects.

During the last year, the LL partners have already tested the functionality of the existing route planner and planned how to build the algorithm – which are the additional variables to take into account, what are the necessary data- to improve the existing software. The partners looked into the messages already given to the users and identified what are the improvements that could be made there based on how skippers react to each message. 4shipping has placed sensors on board 3 vessels to generate real-time data on loading/unloading and route choice processes. PAN and 4Shipping developed the domain model, including the functional designs for the terminal planning module, and validated it intensively using market players. The development of the planning module has already started.

During the next steps, the LL partners will continue to further develop the mitigation module. They will identify the standards for implementation of additional route suggestions, e.g. multiple route suggestions based on different vessels and vessel loading characteristics will be designed. The LL will also agree on the characteristics of the alternative options given by the planner (e.g. first route option shows the optimal route for the smallest, lightest and least draft vessel; the second route shows the route for a selected vessel; the third route shows the route for modified selected vessel (lowered draft)). Finally, it will be identified how to communicate (message) each type of disruption to the skippers.

Partners involved

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