Arison Maritime Center CSMART

Research & Development introduction

Carnival Corporation & Plc. Group has allocated significant resources for conducting port studies (i.e. nautical and mooring risk assessment studies) for 20 navigationally challenging ports per year. This risk assessment program is managed at CSMART.

Nautical Risk Assessment Studies

The general aim of a nautical risk assessment study is to determine the level of risk of a specific class of cruise ship while entering and leaving a specific port.

The primary objectives of a nautical risk assessment study are:

  • To provide factual information about the port
  • To identify generic hazards and navigational/mooring challenges in the port
  • To test various possible manoeuvring strategies
  •  To conduct risk assessment of arrival and departure manoeuvres in various metocean conditions
  • To investigate and test commit point
  • To develop pilotage plans together with bride team and pilots
  • To strengthen pilot-bridge team working relationship
  • To share knowledge and best practices between bridge team and pilots
  •  To provide the decision maker with critical information and supporting evidence by reporting and disseminating the findings

Mooring Studies

CSMART’s port study team also does mooring analysis studies for cruise berths. Mooring analysis is conducted for various possible ship-berth arrangements in a port leading to identification of risks related to mooring and to assess the limiting environmental conditions for mooring. The numerical modelling is carried out by using the OPTIMOOR software. The outcome of the mooring analysis are forces in the mooring lines, bollards and fenders and the ship motions.

Port Database Development

The port study team at CSMART develops high quality port visual databases and electronic charts for NTPRO simulators and Platinum ECDIS systems. These databases and charts are made using: current or future port layout, current bathymetry or a future dredging plan, topography and satellite imagery, 3D visual models of port infrastructure and location & type of aids to navigation. Currently high quality port database of more than 100 ports are available at CSMART. High quality simulator visuals and electronic charts with high density bathymetry allow participants at CSMART to sail into any port in the world, sometimes even before it’s constructed!

Port study team

CSMART Academy has a dedicated port study team which includes Senior Officer from Carnival fleet, Naval Architect, Civil Engineer, 3D Artist, Bathymetry and ENC Specialist and retired Maritime Pilot. The center  also involves external subject matter experts in each port study. They come from diverse backgrounds (active pilots, retired pilots, ex-cruise ship captains, retired cruise ship captains, ECDIS and risk assessment experts from the maritime industry etc.). Local Port Authority representatives and Pilots are invited to CSMART Academy to participate in the study. In past 3 years, 50 pilots and 25 representatives of port and pilot authorities from ports around the world have visited the facility to attend various port studies. Captain’s and senior officers from Carnival’s fleet join each port study as bridge teams.

Main Outcomes

All the findings are reported and disseminated across Carnival fleet, local pilots and port authorities thus providing decision makers with critical information and supporting evidence.

The main outcomes of port study program at CSMART are:

  • Pilotage plans created together by captains and local pilots
  • Mooring plans created by mooring engineer by involving captains and port engineers
  • Shared mental model/best practices between bridge team, pilots and port authority
  • Evidenced based guidance in case of Go - No Go situations
  • Navigation and mooring conducted according to pre-determined parameters
  • Reduced risk of nautical operations
  • Creation of accurate port databases for future use on the simulator for training and research


The Port Studies and Nautical Risk Assessments are currently suspended.

For any queries regarding Port Studies, please contact:

Antonio Di Lieto