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Marine Electronics & Communications

Marine Electronics & Communications

Progress towards smart ship newbuildings

Wed 13 Sep 2017 by Martyn Wingrove

Progress towards smart ship newbuildings

Editor Martyn Wingrove discusses how far ahead the industry is to building the first truly smart ship

The industry is progressing towards the construction of fleets of smart ships that are full of sensors and even independent thinking.

Some of the progress that has been made was discussed this week at London International Shipping Week, where we are filming this video comment.

Finally the satellite connectivity is in place for shipbuilders and shipowners to consider producing ships that transmit information to managers for real-time remote diagnostics and analytics. These can be used for engine monitoring, fuel consumption analysis and to increase navigation safety.

The first smart ships will be built in Asia, and in particular South Korea if an agreement announced last week is progressed. Samsung Heavy Industries and Inmarsat agreed to install smart shipping applications and the connectivity to apply them on new ships.

The agreement will see Fleet Xpress Ka-band VSAT installed on ships that Samsung will build. Inmarsat will then provide dedicated capacity to Samsung to use for smart shipping applications.

This will enable owners to leverage smart ship connectivity in the future. It will also drive the industry to develop remotely controlled ships and eventually autonomous vessels. And a large slice of the progress will be coming from Asian shipbuilders.

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