K Line presses ahead with autonomous shipping drive

Another piece in Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha (K Line)’s autonomous shipping puzzle is being put into place with the Japanese shipping major collaborating with the likes of Fujitsu, Japan Radio Co. (JRC) and Groke Technologies to develop a navigation support system that uses artificial intelligence (AI) and other technologies to assist in making safety maneuvering decisions. 

A combined research and development effort between K Line, Japan Radio Co. (JRC) and YDK Technologies (YDK) seeks to prevent ship accidents and groundings by integrating K Line’s maneuvering expertise and experience, JRC marine radio technology, and YDK’s steering and propulsion control technology.

The system should increase ship operations safety by combining the expertise and technology of the three partners in each step, from situation awareness by the seafarer through ship maneuvering control, using Groke Technologies, Fujitsu, and Forum8 technologies.

The technology is intended to fulfill the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) Degree 1 requirement for autonomous ship development phases where some of the ship’s operation is automated but the crew remains on board. Demonstrations at sea will begin in April 2023 on a variety of ship types and routes, both local and international, with the goal of full-scale commercialisation in the future.

Splash reported yesterday on K Line deploying a marine artificial intelligence system to support onboard machinery operations. Other compatriot shipping giants, Mitsui OSK Lines and Nippon Yusen Kaisha, are also pursuing their own paths towards autonomous shipping.

Adis Ajdin

Adis is an experienced news reporter with a background in finance, media and education. He has written across the spectrum of offshore energy and ocean industries for many years and is a member of International Federation of Journalists. Previously he had written for Navingo media group titles including Offshore Energy, Subsea World News and Marine Energy.
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