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On Watch June 2, 2021

On Watch June 2, 2021



  June 2, 2021


Words from the CEO

cmisapresidentimg-jan272021.jpgWelcome to the latest edition of On Watch, and as I write, we are confident that our communities are seeing Covid rates on the decline which means that the businesses in our sector are getting into top gear and looking at a busy summer ahead. In this edition, we bring you an interview with Dr. Ana Luisa Alfaro, discussing some of the exciting applications of Artificial Intelligence that Global Spatial Technology Solutions beings to the marine sector. Through scientific innovation, collaboration with partners, and a desire to make a positive difference, GSTS is able to harness AI to make a positive impact on our oceans. GSTS is another Canadian company that embraces diversity, and offers talented women like Dr. Alfaro tremendous opportunities. CMISA is proud to highlight the progressive and important work of our member companies. If you want your company to be featured here OnWatch or to find out more about our latest new membership perks, to help your company? For more information on membership and member benefits, please contact and we would be thrilled to add your voice to our strong, cross-sectoral association.

If you are like most of us and finding there is so little time and so much to do, scroll down to the bottom to check out the latest Government of Canada marine procurement opportunities. Many of these projects are perfect for smaller suppliers looking for ways to provide their goods or services to the Government.

Happy reading, and please feel free to share this newsletter on to your colleagues and contacts.

Colin Cooke


Member Spotlight: GSTS
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Photo courtesy of Dr. Ana Luisa Alfaro

Global Spatial Technology Solutions (GSTS) is a Canadian company that specializes in maritime artificial intelligence and analytics. GSTS uses data sets to provide the basis for better decision-making and to help solve important problems, such as saving lives, conserving energy, and protecting the environment. GSTS provides intelligent maritime solutions that process satellite data and other datasets from a variety of sources to help vessels and ports optimize routing, resources, logistics, security, and other applications that require real-time decision-making and response capabilities.

Chief Science Officer Dr. Ana Luisa Alfaro reflects on how quickly things have changed in the digital maritime realm. An engineer with a background in the space industry, Alfaro was one of GSTS’s first employees eight years ago and had the privilege of analyzing the first dataset from the first AIS satellite. Nowadays GSTS is poised to become the NavCanada of the oceans, with the ability to monitor and analyze data emerging from our vast and often mysterious bodies of water. GSTS works with civil agencies, ports, shipping lines and a variety of government departments as it continues to use customer feedback, innovation, state-of-the-art equipment, and practical experience to develop more algorithms to detect movement and change in the oceans. Helpful to this development is the spirit of collaboration in the sector. For example, GSTS works closely with oceanographic institutes and laboratories as well as the Government of Canada on a smartWhales project to understand better the changing habits of right whales and to notify vessels of their presence in order to protect and save the last 400 whales on our planet. As Alfaro points out, “No one person has all the information. Collaboration is essential to improve our world.”

GSTS is well placed for success in this rapidly evolving space. This thoroughly modern company embraces diversity in all its forms and benefits from different ways of looking at the world to combine problem solving skills. Alfaro herself is appreciative of this positive corporate culture. As an engineer and scientist, “I was usually the only woman in my classes, but at GSTS there are many women on the team. We make up to 50% of the company’s technical team, and we bring a different set of abilities to our work.” She values membership in the Canadian Marine Industries and Shipbuilding Association for the information sharing that the association provides, from autonomous vessels to conditions in the Arctic. Combining a thirst for knowledge and discovery, a passion to make a better world, and a desire to embrace collaboration GSTS is a company on the move.


Canada- Denmark Virtual Defence Partnering Days June 15-17

Pre-registration is open for a virtual workshop and matchmaking session for Canadian companies interested in opportunities in Denmark or to partner with Danish companies for Canadian opportunities. 

Autonomous Ships: Regulatory Scoping Exercise Completed

IMO’s Maritime Safety Committee finalizes its analysis of ship safety treaties, to assess next steps for regulating Maritime Autonomous Surface Ships (MASS).

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Design Issues Weigh Down $45b Australian Frigate Program

The ability to upgrade the navy’s future frigates with new weapons and systems could be crimped, with the Defence Department revealing the first batch of ships will have a weight margin of little more than 3 per cent for future growth.

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Canadian Coast Guard Moving Toward Gender-Neutral Uniforms

Each year, the Canadian Coast Guard College welcomes dozens of new recruits to its waterfront campus in Westmount, N.S. 

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SeaspanLNG completes LOI with CIMC Sinopacific Offshore & Engineering Shipyard for 7600m3 LNG Bunker Vessel

NORTH VANCOUVER, BC. – SeaspanLNG is pleased to announce that it has completed a Letter of Intent (LOI) with Nantong CIMC Sinopacific Offshore & Engineering Co. Ltd for the construction of a 7600m3 LNG bunker vessel.

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Production of fifth patrol ship underway in Nova Scotia

Irving Shipbuilding Inc. has cut first steel for the future HMCS Frédérick Rolette, officially beginning production of Canada’s fifth Arctic and offshore patrol ship built under the National Shipbuilding Strategy.

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CSC: Capabilities to date

Hi folks. Now that some of the confirmed capabilities and systems have been disclosed thus far on the CSC Type 26 Frigates, it may be time to offer an update. 

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Vancouver Maritime Centre for Climate opens and launches Operation Flagship

In the wake of its official opening, the Vancouver Maritime Centre for Climate (VMCC) has announced the launch of Operation Flagship. 

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B.C. Ship-Assist Operator Orders Three Electric, Two LNG-Fueled Tugs

A newly-founded ship assist operator in British Columbia has ordered three all-electric tugs and two LNG-powered tugs from Turkish specialists Sanmar Shipyard, adding to the world's small but growing list of battery-powered towing vessels.

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Government of Canada and Ahousaht First Nation partnering on new response vessel to strengthen marine safety in British Columbia

VICTORIA, BC, May 19, 2021 /CNW/ - As part of the Canadian Coast Guard's Indigenous Community Boat Volunteer Pilot Program, Ahousaht First Nation has received and launched its new dedicated response vessel.

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Pandemic throwing wrench in construction of new navy, coast guard ships: officials

OTTAWA — COVID-19 has thrown yet another wrench in the long overdue construction of new ships for the navy and coast guard, say top military and procurement officials, adding the full scope of the damage won't be known until after the pandemic.

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Perks for Members

CMISA promotes and supports our industry with activities to:

  • Build and maintain ships for Canada and for the private sector (Build & Maintain)
  • Support business opportunities for our marine industry members (Support)
  • Sustain a network to voice our concerns and promote our solutions (Sustain)


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