Japanese partners complete unmanned ship tech demo

A consortium consisting of Marubeni Corporation, Tryangle, Mitsui E&S Shipbuilding and the City of Yokosuka has concluded a pilot project with the aim to establish the technology for autonomous ship operations — the proof of concept.

unmanned
Photo: Marubeni

In February 2020, the consortium applied to and secured a place in the Joint Technological Development Programme for the Demonstration of Unmanned Ships – MEGURI2040 led by The Nippon Foundation.

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As informed, the proof of concept was successfully completed in a voyage route between NewMikasa Pier and Sarushima Island in Yokosuka City, in which the ship operations, including berthing, were fully automated using an existing small-sized passenger boat.

The autonomous ship technology, which was applied by Mitsui E&S Shipbuilding on an existing small-sized passenger boat owned and operated by Tryangle, achieved fully autonomous ship operations including unberthing, navigation, collision avoidance and berthing.

Photo: Marubeni

According to the consortium members, the implementation of this autonomous ship technology from the proof of concept is expected to reduce the workload of the ship crew while enhancing operational safety.

Marubeni, Tryangle, Mitsui E&S Shipbuilding, and the City of Yokosuka intend to use this technology and experience “to effectively help contribute to a safe and sustainable society”.