The benefits and promises of the digital twin continue to fill our inboxes and take center stage in our meetings and discussions. The Digital Twin, with all of its potential, has not really manifested itself in any shipyard across the world. This is not because it does not have huge value, but rather that it requires a lot of change, discipline, and focus. All of which take time.
However, there are portions of the digital twin which are already well on their way to helping the marine industry achieve their digital twin vision. In most cases, these portions of the digital twin are being marketed as The Digital Twin which is incorrect when taking a holistic systems approach. For example, many engine and large equipment manufacturers have a Digital Twin solution for the asset that they are selling (an engine for example). Even though this is not the holistic Digital Twin solution we are usually talking about, these Digital Twins nodes that represent a specific asset are the step many are taking toward their vision of a holistic Digital Ship (Twin).
The adoption of these Digital Twin nodes is the start of the reality we will be facing in the future. There will be no single Digital Twin Platform, but rather a network of connected Digital Twin Platforms that together will define our true holistic Digital Twin.