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Monday, June 24, 2024

ABS Approves Fully Autonomous Ship Framework

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

July 20, 2023

Source: MHI

Source: MHI

The design of a pioneering, fully autonomous ship framework has received approval in principle (AIP) from ABS.

The fully autonomous ship framework, named APExS-auto (Action Planning and Execution System for full autonomous), was developed by Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK), Monohakobi Technology Institute (MTI) and Japan Marine Science Inc. (JMS) as part of the fully autonomous ship program MEGURI 2040.

ABS worked with MTI and JMS to review the APExS-auto framework in accordance with the ABS Requirements for Autonomous and Remote-Control Functions. The APExS-auto framework is designed using a systems engineering approach to govern berth-to-berth autonomous navigation operations. It covers the full spectrum of operations from onboard activities to supervision activities in the remote operations center.

The AIP provides a roadmap for autonomous vessels complying with the APExS-auto framework to qualify for possible ABS classification notations such as AUTONOMOUS (NAV, MNV, RO3) for navigation, maneuvering, collision detection and collision avoidance.

Mitsubishi Shipbuilding is also participating in the MEGURI2040 project. The second phase of the project, which started in 2020, aims for full-scale commercialization of fully autonomous ship technology by 2025.

In addition to designing next-generation ships that will support the coastal shipping industry in the future, a demonstration of ship-land operations will be conducted to simulate the future coastal shipping industry that will be supported by a fully autonomous ship. The demonstration will use four different types of ships (a newly built container ship with fully autonomous operation system, an existing container ship, a RORO cargo ship and a remote island route ship with some autonomous operation system) and two fleet operation centers. Mitsubishi Shipbuilding will lead the development of the autonomous navigation system for the new container ship.