Rolls Royce and the Autonomous High Seas Vol. 2

Rolls Royce continues to outline its vision of a more effective and autonomous future for oceanic shipping.

rolls royce, shipping, autonomous, ship, Early this year Rolls Royce debuted their vision for the future of shipping. As Rolls sees it the high seas are ripe for automation, especially when it comes to cargo shipments.

According to Rolls Royce, “Intelligence will be the next major transition for the shipping industry as ships are set to become more complex and will require high levels of data analysis to operate on-board systems to manage propulsion, navigation and potentially lead to autonomous vessels.”

Central to this new era is an advanced bridge concept called the Future Operator Experience (oX).

Rather than having a captain helming each vessel Rolls Royce’s engineers imagine ship operators working in concert with the entire armada of vessels in their area.  Stationed at a bridge that’s equipped with augmented reality displays, helmsmen will be able to monitor every aspect of their vessels including information about their cargo, dangers in their blind spots (including submerged obstacles) and how to deal with mechanical malfunctions.

rolls royce, shipping, autonomous, ship, In addition to their enhanced ability to monitor onboard activity, captains using oX will also have access to a torrent of information coming from onshore sites that are coordinating traffic, monitoring weather and maintaining supply chains.

Though the oX concept might seem a far-fetched fantasy, a number of its core technologies are already in operation around the globe.  With that in mind, engineers at Rolls Royce might be justified in their prediction that the largely autonomous high seas are only a generation out.

Image Courtesy of Rolls Royce