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Samsung Heavy Industries Completes 1,500km Autonomous Voyage

South Korean shipbuilder Samsung Heavy Industries said on Thursday it had successfully demonstrated autonomous vessel navigation from South Korea to Taiwan, marking an industry first.

The demonstration involved the installation of Samsung’s self-developed remote autonomous navigation technology, known as Samsung Autonomous Ship (SAS), and the smart ship system SVESSEL on a 15,000 TEU-class large container ship constructed at Geoje Shipyard.

The vessel sailed about 1,500 kilometers from Geoje, South Kyungsang Province, to Jeju Island and Kaohsiung Port in Taiwan between June 26 and July 1.

Cutting-edge autonomous navigation technology, including automatic identification system (AIS), radar, camera sensors, and sensor fusion, was employed during the verification test. The system accurately identified over 9,000 obstacles, such as ships and buoys, within a 50-kilometer radius and safely navigated a bypass route during 90 real ship encounters.

The successful test demonstrated an upgraded autonomous navigation technology capable of presenting a secure avoidance route in challenging scenarios, such as head-on or side-by-side encounters, prevalent in the South China Sea’s busy shipping environment.

The autonomous navigation system developed by Samsung displayed a route that was over 90% consistent with the avoidance route decided by a skilled navigator.

The container ship utilized for the demonstration was equipped with various state-of-the-art smart ship solutions developed by Samsung, including the condition-based equipment maintenance system SVESSEL CBM and the electronic logbook SVESSEL eLogbook.

The company said the technology has the potential to revolutionize the shipping industry by making ships safer, more efficient, and more environmentally friendly.

Source: The Korea Economic Daily

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