Damen Shipyards has established an alliance with Boston-based Sea Machines Robotics to develop collision avoidance functionality for vessels designed by the shipbuilding group.
Initially, Damen will adopt Sea Machines’ SM300 autonomous-command and remote-helm control technology in its test environment, the company explained. This will enable the assessment of integration complexity and system performance on any type of Damen vessel. Software and digital twins will reveal the benefits of the technology before shipboard installations.
The SM300 system assigns the navigator a supervisory role, enabling him or her to carry out other functions while the ship continues its course and avoids collisions based on the IMO’s Convention on the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (COLREG). The system uses an array of sensors, including radar and cameras, combined with machine-learning algorithms and artificial intelligence to identify objects and manoeuvre the ship safely to its destination.
Damen research manager, Toine Cleophas, said: “This alliance will play an important role towards the realisation of Damen’s strategy, which is built on the continual development of digitalisation, sustainability and operational excellence of Damen products and services. The collaboration forms a part of Damen’s R&D programme, Smart Ship, and will increase customer value by supporting a more digitalised Damen portfolio.”