MOL increases use of augmented reality navigation tool

Japan’s Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL) has upgraded its augmented reality navigation tool so that it can spot shallow waters. The system, developed with Furuno Electric, can now display borders between deepsea areas where vessels can navigate safely and shallower areas that may pose risks.

The previous system required manual setting to display shallow areas, but this upgrade allows for automatic full-time display of the safety contour (the red line in the image above), supporting the navigators’ situation awareness visually.

The AR navigation system has already been installed on 24 MOL-operated very large crude carriers (VLCCs). MOL plans to expand the installation of the system to more vessels in the future, and is proceeding with trials on ships in its energy transport fleet including LNG carriers, as well as dry bulk carriers.

It was a MOL-operated bulk carrier that was involved in last year’s most high profile grounding – the Wakashio newcastlemax coming to rest on coral reefs 2 km off the coastline of Mauritius last July, an accident the shipping major is still paying for.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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