Northrop Grumman Corporation has been selected to supply integrated bridge systems (IBS) for Royal Caribbean’s Genesis Project shipbuilding program.
Northrop Grumman’s Sperry Marine business unit has been awarded a contract to supply a complete integrated suite of navigation, communication and control systems for the new giant cruise ships, which will be built at Aker Yards in Finland.
The Genesis Project integrated bridge systems will be based on Sperry Marine’s VisionMaster FT technology, and will include a total of 13 TotalWatch multi-function workstations on the bridge, as well as a TabletBridge wireless node in the captain’s cabin. Similar to a modern jet aircraft’s avionics suite, the Sperry Marine TotalWatch concept brings together information from radars, electronic chart display and information systems, and other shipboard systems for display on a single high-resolution flat-screen display, offering a dramatic improvement in situational awareness for watch officers.
To comply with Royal Caribbean’s rigorous safety requirements, Sperry Marine has developed a dual redundant network architecture with built-in backup for all critical components. The bridge layout will be based on a modified U-shaped cockpit with trackball controls built into the watch officers’ chairs. A separate command and safety center will be located adjacent to the wheel house. All processors will be rack-mounted in two separate electrical rooms for easy access.
Sperry Marine is also under contract to supply the IBS for Royal Caribbean’s next Freedom-class ship, currently under construction, and has supplied the same equipment for all of the cruise line’s new Voyager-, Radiance- and Vision-class ships, ensuring that all of the vessels have standardized equipment and operating procedures. Sperry Marine also provides extensive navigation training for the ships’ watch officers and fleet-wide service and technical support under a comprehensive service agreement with Royal Caribbean.
Royal Caribbean’s new class of giant cruise ships, rated at 220,000 gross tonnage, will carry more than 5,400 passengers. The first ship is scheduled to enter service in 2009, and the second, also on order from Aker Yards, is due for completion in 2010.