Portos RS and DockTech sign an unprecedented use-of-technology agreement, using Wilson Sons’ tugboats as data collectors, to increase the efficiency of port and shipping operations

  • 14/09/2023
  • 7 minutes

It is the first agreement signed by a Brazilian port authority with a foreign startup that
offers solutions to better plan dredging operations and seabed behaviour

The Israeli startup DockTech celebrated with Portos RS a new milestone in Brazil.
On September 13th, for the first time, an agreement was signed by a port authority,
Portos RS, which manages the public ports of Rio Grande, Pelotas and Porto
Alegre, with a startup, which develops innovative technologies for real-time seabed
monitoring to increase the efficiency and safety of port and shipping operations.

Founded by entrepreneur and former Israeli Navy officer Uri Yoselevich, the startup
DockTech, through digital twin technology and massive data analysis, devised a
solution that uses depth measurement data collected by tugs and other harbour
vessels to create a virtual representation of the seabed of ports and waterways.
The solution consists of real-time tracking of waterway depth and understanding
how the silting pattern of ports can affect shipping and cargo transport safety.
After two years of collaboration, testing and data collection, the system monitors
the seabed of waterways around the port facilities managed by Portos RS, using
Wilson Sons’ tugboats and other harbour vessels. The vessels were equipped with
devices that integrate the technological solution with tide sensors and AIS
(Automatic Identification System) data, in addition to tidal, zoning and threshold

The DockTech system commissioned by Portos RS uses vessel-mounted devices
to obtain waterway depth information. Portos RS informs that controlling and
monitoring waterway silting will enable the teams to obtain information more quickly
and accurately. According to Portos RS, the tool will help to make specific, less
costly interventions in critically silted areas.

DockTech operates in nine countries, with over 122 vessels which monitor 35 port
facilities. In addition to monitoring the ports of Brazil using Wilson Sons’ 80 tugs,
the startup operates in the United States (Tampa Bay and Mississippi River),
Colombia (Barranquilla), Ecuador (Guayaquil), Australia (Geraldton), Germany
(Hamburg), Romania (Danube), Spain (Valencia) and Israel (Ashdod).

“The agreement with Portos RS is a milestone in our activities in the country.
DockTech’s technology applied in Brazil and in other countries shows that our
solution supports the daily management of port operations. By capitalising on
technology, our purpose is to avoid unnecessary costs through more assertive
planning of dredging operations and seabed behaviour, also allowing more cargo
to be loaded onto ships with even greater safety”, stated DockTech CEO and
founder Uri Yoselevich.

Wilson Sons has been collaborating with DockTech for over three years, by making
its vessels available to collect depth data in all ports it operates along the Brazilian

“The technology developed by DockTech can collect data in real time, 24×7, by
mapping out seabed variations. With this system, Portos RS will be able to see
the depth conditions of the waterways under its jurisdiction, anticipating potential
silting and vessel draft restrictions. The technology will deliver safer and more
efficient port operations”, says Wilson Sons digital transformation director Eduardo

Portos RS currently manages more than 754 kilometres of waterways in the public
ports of Rio Grande, Pelotas and Porto Alegre. In 2022, close to 40 million tons of
cargo was handled at these ports.

“DockTech’s solution will provide greater visibility into the seabed conditions of the
region’s waterways. It will help our dredging teams to make data-driven decisions
to improve safety, sustainability and efficiency. This is an important step taken by
Portos RS on the path towards innovation and digitalization”, said Portos RS
president Cristiano Klinger.

In December 2021, Wilson Sons and DockTech signed an important agreement
for the development of this technology. It is the technical cooperation agreement
signed with the Santos Port Authority (APS), a relevant milestone in the
improvement and use of the technology in the Port of Santos, Latin America’s
largest port facility. Since then, in addition to Portos RS and APS, the startup has
been confirming the value of its solution, with letters of intent signed for
applications in many other Brazilian ports, such as SCPar — Porto de Imbituba,
SCpar — São Francisco do Sul, and APPA — Port of Paranaguá.

About DockTech
DockTech provides real-time status of waterway conditions to support shipping
operations and forecast-based activity by leveraging AI and dynamic data.
Implementing DockTech’s solution in ports ensures safer shipping and better
resource allocation, improving the overall efficiency of the maritime supply chain.

About Wilson Sons
Wilson Sons is the largest port-shipping logistics operator in Brazil, with over 185
years of experience. The company operates across Brazil and offers complete
solutions to more than 5,000 clients, including shipowners, importers and
exporters, the offshore energy industry, renewable energy projects, agribusiness
corporations, and other players in different businesses. Learn more at:

About Portos RS
Portos RS is a government company responsible for managing the ports of Rio
Grande do Sul. This system has three units: Rio Grande, Pelotas and Porto Alegre.
The facilities include 22 terminals for private use and an industrial district. Learn
more at: www.portosrs.com.br

Press Relations
Danthi Comunicação Integrada
Gustavo Villela — [email protected] / +55 21 99124 5158
Sérgio Costa — [email protected] / +55 21 99145 3644

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