ABB RoboScreens for Royal Caribbean's Quantum Class

By Eric Haun
Thursday, June 12, 2014
Six ABB RoboScreens attached to six industrial robots help Royal Caribbean boost onboard entertainment capacity (Photo: ABB)

Six 100” video screens attached to six industrial robots help cruise ship operator expand onboard entertainment and amenities possibilities

As Royal Caribbean designed its new Quantum Class cruise ships, a key initiative was to enhance onboard entertainment and amenities. Consequently, the Quantum of the Seas and Anthem of the Seas ships currently under construction include such “firsts at seas” as a 300ft skydiving simulator, a large sports and recreation complex with bumper cars and a roller rink, and virtual balconies with real-time ocean views on all interior staterooms.

The signature venue on each ship, however, is Two70°, a multilevel great room named for its magnificent 270-degree panoramic sea views through vast, floor-to-ceiling glass walls spanning almost three decks at the stern of the ship. A living room by day, Two70° transforms to an entertainment center by night, seamlessly blending live performances with cutting-edge visual technology, highlighted by six ABB RoboScreens attached to a gantry above the main stage.

A RoboScreen is a graphical screen mounted to the arm of an ABB articulated arm robot, which creates a unique viewer experience by bringing virtually unlimited, six-axis movement to the video media. Available in various sizes, the Two70° RoboScreens feature six ABB IRB 6620 robots, each holding a 100” diagonal Daktronics LED screen. Housed in the ceiling while not in use, during shows in Two70° the RoboScreens will extend down on the gantry to a position above the stage, displaying unique video and imagery while performing choreographed movements, all custom produced for the specific performance.

Developed by Andy Flessas (aka andyRobot) in conjunction with ABB, RoboScreens first gained prominence in 2010 when five large models travelled the globe as main stage props for the Bon Jovi Circle Tour. They have since added visual intrigue to a concert tour by Kis-My-Ft2, a Japanese Pop band; the Las Vegas house show for deadmau5, world famous music producer and performer; and the Ultra-Music Festival in Miami. The RoboScreens being installed on the Quantum Class ships will be the first on any sort of moving vessel.

The six Royal Caribbean RoboScreens will provide a high-tech visual enhancement to live performances in Two70°, moving in preprogrammed synchronization to the show’s music and dance. The RoboScreens will periodically assemble in various formations, such as six screens in a row to form one continuous, long screen; a three by two stack to form one big square screen; or a serpentine row, much like a ‘W’ and a ‘V’ strung together. When the screens are together they can display one large cohesive video or image, and when they are apart they can display individual, coordinated images that virtually jump from screen to screen. The combined choreography of screen movement and innovative onscreen display provides an extraordinary accessory to the entertainment experience.

“We are always looking for the next thing, and by coincidence I came across the ABB RoboScreen in the Entertainment environment. It looked very interesting as a potential good fit for Two70° on the Quantum of the Seas,” said Christopher Vlassopulos, an entertainment technology manager with Royal Caribbean. “After getting some valuable information from one of my contacts at ABB in Miami, the connection to ABB Robotics and Andy Flessas at Casino Arts was made.”

The project involves the close collaboration of a number or parties, both within ABB and externally. Being the first installation of an ABB robot on any ship, the ABB Marine Power Group in Helsinki, Finland and the ABB Robotics North American team in Auburn Hills, Michigan worked together for the first time. The ABB PC software team in Gothenburg, Sweden is also involved, working on the programming software and addressing the unique challenges of operating robots at sea.

The external partners include Royal Caribbean, andyRobot, Daktronics, Waagner Biro, the gantry provider, Coolux, the video server manufacturer, and Meyer Werft, the shipbuilder based in Papenburg, Germany.

“As a manufacturer of industrial robots, collaboration both internally and with outside industry parties is a natural occurrence. But we had never worked with a cruise ship operator before, nor had we worked with ABB’s Marine Systems and Solutions business,” said Nick Hunt, an ABB Robotics technology manager working closely on the project. “Despite coming from widely disparate disciplines, each with its own arcane nomenclature, all groups were very accommodating, offering authoritative, expert advice within their spheres, making sure all parties fully understood the scope of their specific capabilities and recommendations without delay or procedural red tape.”

andyRobot and the ABB PC software team collaborated to create a custom developed Show Builder software to allow the various live performance teams that work with Royal Caribbean to easily program the choreographed RoboScreen movements to complement their specific shows.

The core of the Show Builder software is a library of preprogrammed choreography building blocks that show producers can select from to model the RoboScreen movements. The library components are created using a Maya-based Robot Animator software package co-developed several years ago by andyRobot and the ABB RobotStudio simulation software team. A show is ultimately produced by selecting building block movements from the library in succession until the choreography is complete.

“Robot Animator is huge for the production companies that are going to be using the system to make theater,” said andyRobot. “These tools will make it easy for production companies that have no experience with robots to incorporate the robots into their shows. They may not be familiar with robots, but they are all very familiar with animation.”

The complexity of the project is magnified by the challenges that are presented by installing robots on a ship, safely withstanding the natural rolling movement and the varying seas the ship will routinely encounter.

“The challenge of installing robots on a ship are from the natural pitch and roll that occurs in varying magnitude from normal to moderate to rough seas,” said Hunt. “To minimize the effects of this motion, the robots will have well defined thresholds for varying sea conditions.”

The Quantum of the Seas is scheduled to launch in November of this year, and Anthem of the Seas will launch in April 2015.

abb.com

 

  • Image: ABB

    Image: ABB


New Products

Royston Debuts Engine Diagnostics Service

Diesel power specialist Royston has expanded upon its traditional engine service and repair business with the introduction of a new engine diagnostics, health check and consultancy service.

Wärtsilä to Launch Sea-Master at SMM

Set to launch at SMM 2016 in Hamburg September 6-9, 2016, the new Wärtsilä Sea-Master system uses digital technology to monitor shaft bearings and seals to help

First Multi-stream DuPont Scrubbers Installed

DuPont, through its subsidiary Belco Technologies Corporation (BELCO), is installing the first of its proprietary in-line, multi-engine marine scrubbers serving

Shipbuilding

Wärtsilä BWMS for Three Maersk Tankers

Maersk Tankers A/S of Denmark has selected Wärtsilä's Electro Chlorination (EC) Ballast Water Management System (BWMS) for three new 50,000 DWT medium range (MR)

China to Supply Pakistan With 8 New Stealth Attack Submarines

The Chinese government will supply eight modified diesel-electric attack submarines to Pakistan by the year 2028, reports Sputnik.  Four of the subs would be

Electric Boat Wins $300 Mln Virginia-class Submarine Contract

US-based General Dynamics subsidiary Electric Boat won a contract for more than $300 million to maintain design and engineering specifications for Virginia Class submarines,

Passenger Vessels

Refit River Cruiser Sets Sail for Crystal

The newly renovated vessel Mozart, which began passenger service in July 2016, marks Crystal Cruises’ first venture into European river cruising.   Before for

Caribbean Fantasy Fire Extinguished

A fire that broke out aboard the passenger vessel Caribbean Fantasy at 7:42 a.m. on August 17 has been extinguished, and the vessel has been moored safely in port.

New Tour Vessel for Mary D Cruises

A new high-end tour vessel is scheduled to be delivered to for Mary D Cruises of New Caledonia in late 2016.    Designed by Incat Crowther with styling reminiscent of a yacht,

News

Arctic Sea Ice Melt Continues

As of August 14, Arctic sea ice extent is tracking third lowest in the satellite record, according to the National Snow & Ice Data Center (NSIDC). The southern

Hyundai Merchant Marine to buy Hanjin's 'Good' Assets

South Korea's financial regulator said on Wednesday that Hyundai Merchant Marine Co Ltd will seek to acquire healthy assets of troubled shipper Hanjin Shipping Co Ltd.

APM Terminals to invest $70 mln in Port Elizabeth Terminal

The Port of New York and New Jersey is the largest port on the US East Coast and third largest in the United States with 6.37 million TEU handled in 2015.  In 2014,

Electronics

WSS Marketing Turner Design’s Ballast Water Compliance Tool

Wilhelmsen Ships Service (WSS), provider of products and services to the shipping industry, said it has signed a partnership with Turner Designs USA to market its

Alfa Laval Debuts FlowSync

Flow optimization of the separator feed increases protection from cat fines while decreasing energy use. The new Alfa Laval FlowSync is a single solution for automatic flow control,

MobileOps Pursuing Maritime Business

Redmond, Wash. based MobileOps, Inc., a software company specializing in the design and development of maritime software applications (dispatch, safety, compliance,

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Maritime Standards Offshore Oil Pod Propulsion Port Authority Ship Repair Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.2411 sec (4 req/sec)