With the implementation phase of the 2004 International Convention for the Control of Ships' Ballast Water and Sediments having commenced in September 2017, the need to install and operate Ballast Water Management Systems [BWMS] aboard actively trading vessels is a requirement for the marine industry. As the ability to move ballast water is vital to shipboard operations, it is of critical importance that the installed BWMS possess a support network capable of providing prompt and effective response to system malfunction thereby preventing unscheduled vessel operational delays and expensive consequences. By developing and deploying an infrastructure for remote access to customers, field-service personnel, and installed BWMS equipment, manufacturers may implement vast improvements in the economics, organization, and safety of their support networks. This paper offers a brief introduction to the context of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) D2 standard, expands on challenges associated with traditional approaches to shipboard equipment support, elucidates methods for implementing remote access technologies as solutions for efficient field support, and explores the real-world applications/capabilities of utilizing such technology. Additionally, this paper highlights the incumbent need for all ships' equipment to be designed with digitization in mind to improve operability and enable remote troubleshooting and maintenance in real-time.

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