Autonomous marine navigation startup Orca AI raises fresh funding
Orca AI, an AI-based navigation and collision avoidance solution, has raised $13 million in Series A funding, taking its total raised to over $15.5 million.
Orca AI said its solution is the first step in introducing autonomous features to vessels already on the water.
As explained, the latest raise will be used to support the company’s investment in technology, international expansion and growth.
Orca AI was founded by naval technology experts, Yarden Gross and Dor Raviv, in an effort to prevent some of the 4,000 annual marine incidents, causing loss of lives, environmental hazards such as oil spills and billions of dollars in damages. These incidents are largely due to human error, which has contributed to 75-96% of collisions and continues to rise, as the coronavirus pandemic makes it harder for regular crew changes.
“The maritime industry has come leaps and bounds in recent years, but is still far behind aviation with technological innovations. Ships deal with increasingly congested waterways, severe weather and low-visibility conditions creating difficult navigation experiences with often expensive cargo,” Yarden Gross, CEO, and co-founder, said.
“The recent events in the Suez Canal have created more attention than ever on the maritime industry, highlighting its importance to us all. Our solution provides … insight and data to any ship in the world, helping to reduce these challenging situations and collisions in the future.”
“Commercial shipping has historically been a highly regulated and traditional industry. However, we are now “witnessing a positive change in adoption of tech solutions to increase safety and efficiency. There are a rising number of incidents that are primarily caused by human error, which technology is significantly able to reduce,” Zohar Loshitzer, Principal from OCV, added.
The startup provides an AI-navigation and vessel tracking system to support ships in difficult to navigate situations and congested waterways by supplementing its existing onboard sensors with vision sensors, thermal and low light cameras, as well as AI-powered algorithms which constantly analyse the environment and alert crew to dangerous situations. The data collected provides risk insights to shipping and insurance companies.