Having a strong network is the key to an accelerator. It allows for connections to potential investors, mentors, and industry experts. It also opens up opportunities for collaborations and partnerships that can help drive the success of the accelerator program and its participating startups. Furthermore, it helps us to get new knowledge of innovations, disrupting the maritime industry.

A great example of this is our visit to the Concurrent Design Facility (CDF) at the European Space Agency (ESA) in Noordwijk, co-organised by the co-founder of DecisionHall – James White. We were joined by a big group of partners: Van Oord, Boskalis, City of Rotterdam, Port of Rotterdam, Deltares, Damen and ecosystem members Marin and iTanks.

DecisionHall and ESA

The Hague-based start-up DecisionHall joined PortXL 7th acceleration program in September with an ambition to collaborate with various maritime stakeholders to de-risk complex climate, sustainability, and energy transition projects.

DecisionHall entered into a partnership with Royal HaskoningDHV to investigate utilising ESA-validated processes, facilities, software and digital modelling techniques in the context of large and complex energy transition projects, particularly related to energy transition projects.

According to James White: “We equip our customers with everything they need to make robust, and defendable decisions helping them ensure that they get projects right the first time. We offer the same advanced digital tools, time-proven processes, and amazing facilities that the European Space Agency uses to enable humans to live and work in orbit and ensure that every space mission is a successful one.”

Using technology perfected at the ESA over the last two decades, the start-up aims to create reusable digital models and digital twins of the most common CO2 reduction and climate change mitigation projects. These digital models will represent all facets of projects including engineering details, cost, risk and how the public is engaged.

The company’s mission is to create a global knowledge-sharing network based on a 100% open-source approach to help both public and private sector organisations de-risk complex climate projects (SDG-13) or any other complex project related to the UN SDGs.

DecisionHall (DH) is enhancing ESA’s technologies and processes to improve outcomes for complex energy transition and climate-related projects, creating more effective ways to involve the public in the decision-making process. A key factor in the success of the ESA is the use of a Digital Systems Level Interaction Models (SLIM) to capture the interrelationships between various stakeholders, align them towards a common goal, identify and eliminate failed assumptions at the earliest possible time, and support better collaborative decision-making.

Concurrent Design Facility

Massimo Bandecchi illustrates all the CDF projects at ESA

During the visit, Massimo Bandecchi, veteran ESA head of systems and concurrent engineering, as well as the creator of the Concurrent Design Facility (CDF) and advisor to DecisionHall, introduced us to the methodology and way of working within the CDF. Ideas for new space missions, systems or structures are given a definite blueprint in ESA’s state-of-the-art facilities.

The CDF’s infrastructure, methodology and processes allow teams of experts from different engineering disciplines to work in close coordination in the same place at the same time to complete the most complex designs imaginable ‒ in a matter of a few weeks rather than several months.

Furthermore, the CDF is made up of four design rooms, as well as various support and ancillary rooms that are organised around a central foyer. The main design room, which features a 6 x 2-metre projection screen and 30 computer stations, is primarily used for large-scale missions or systems of systems studies. Some computer stations are designated for specific technical disciplines, while others can be configured for any discipline. The project design rooms are smaller and are generally used for instrument design studies and reviews, as well as for smaller meetings that are a part of a larger study.

The CDF’s suite of rooms is equipped with all the hardware, software and communication tools to create a multidisciplinary and concurrent design environment.

All the rooms can be linked via an audio-visual network allowing data to be shared on any or all the screens in the other rooms. All rooms have full video conferencing facilities and the ability to record presentations and video conferences via built-in recording systems. 3D printing capabilities allow teams to examine concrete prototypes of the system they are designing.

DecisionHall is bringing these same innovations to commercial clients with the aim of de-risking and accelerating their complex sustainability, resilience, and energy transition projects.

Climate Action Center

The core proposal of DecisionHall is the Climate Action Center, which uses the latest digital engineering techniques to provide a global reach to understand the risks, costs and time involved in implementing complex sustainability projects and accelerating sustainability projects with the goal of significantly reducing climate change.

It is a “digital field lab” that assembles a consortium of stakeholders who have resilience projects. The main concept is to use reusable digital models that represent the solutions that need to be implemented to reduce carbon emissions and prepare for the impacts of climate change on communities. These models are used to accelerate project execution and reduce risk.

The key aspects of Climate Action Centre are the Integrated Modeling Software such as RHEA Group’s Comet / CDP4, Digital Models & Digital Twins, Special Highly Parallelized Processes like Concurrent Design from ESA, Multidisciplinary Project Teams, and Advanced Facilities such as Digital Decision Facility taken from ESA and CDF. You can read more about all aspects by clicking the button below