Future of ships


#202

If the technology can be worked out, if you checked you would find out that a large number of drones crash, and they’re being run by the USAF with no profit motive, automation tends to work much better in think tanks and classrooms than in real life.

Moreover most of the time it is cheaper to do routine maintenance underway than to try and cram it into a 12-24 hour port stay


#203

[QUOTE=DavidMT;191106]If the technology can be worked out, if you checked you would find out that a large number of drones crash, and they’re being run by the USAF with no profit motive, automation tends to work much better in think tanks and classrooms than in real life.

Moreover most of the time it is cheaper to do routine maintenance underway than to try and cram it into a 12-24 hour port stay[/QUOTE]

Yes USAF drones crash, or are shot down, but they are remote operated not autonomous and operate in war zones.
Driver less cars have crashed too, but so does cars with drivers.

AGAIN, if you have engineers or other service personnel on board to save on maintenance and repairs in port you have to have all the same facilities as a manned vessel. How do you figure “it is cheaper”?

No crew means no living quarters, no catering, no LSA, but most of all nobody in harms way, if there should be an accident, fire or whatever other calamities.


#204

drive the ship for 5 years then scrap it and base your financial project on that so it never goes for haulout
no accommodation stuff at all would make it very simple and cheap to build
Solar power and battery’s for all ancillary electrical requirements?
Just need a powerplant that will run for 40,000hrs
Maybe go diesel electric via multiple engines and buy maintenance package with engine company so if it stops the gen set maker pays.
Put the gen sets on deck in containers ( how big can they be 2MW?hmm so thats a few but who cares with 20,000 teu space)so they can get loaded and unloaded in port with plug in power and fuel?
LPG powered of course
or http://www.energy.siemens.com/ru/pool/hq/power-generation/gas-turbines/SGT-600/downloads/SGT-600_GT_PowerGen_EN.pdf
40k TBO


#205

It is on gcaptain as well. First test area for autonomous ships has been designated and test will start soon: http://gcaptain.com/norway-designates-first-drone-ship-testing-area/?utm_campaign=Roost&utm_source=Roost&utm_medium=push
Get with it.

For those who cannot be borderd reading the article, hes is the end of it:

In September Finland set a target of having the first unmanned maritime products, services and a “vivid ecosystem” by 2025.


#206

Have just designated Secaucus first test area for levitating autonomous garbage trucks. It’s a bold future, anything is possible. Stop fighting it “get with it”.


#207

[QUOTE=KPChief;191137]Have just designated Secaucus first test area for levitating autonomous garbage trucks. It’s a bold future, anything is possible. Stop fighting it “get with it”.[/QUOTE]

Are these trucks going to have engineers onboard?


#208

I’m reasonably sure [B][I]levitating [/I][/B] trucks have not in fact been invented yet, but a garbage truck (levitating or not) is offline for at least 16 of 24 hours, in a location mechanics would have access to it and be able preform routine maintenance and repairs.

A ship on the other hand must operate 24 hours a day for several days in a row, and then be shut down for remarkably short periods of time, big difference.

You seem overly sold on the promises of “gee-wiz” technology, people with real world experience tend to be far more skeptical of “foolproof” unbreakable machinery.

Perhaps less time in an ivory tower and more time in a ship yard or at sea would provide you with some insights.


#209

Here are some things I’ve been considering about drone ships

I agree with those posters who observed that drone ships would be purpose-built from the keel up, and will look very odd to the average Old Salt. Similarly, they may cause changes to Admiralty law.

I live in Puget Sound. No way is a large drone ship going to enter the Salish Sea without a pilot aboard. The public will demand a human override aboard, because of environmental concerns,. Will this be the case for a fraction of the world’s port, most of them, or all of them? My guess is more rather than less. So bar pilots will still have a job.

Which brings up technical problems of ships’ control systems. Right now, a pilot coming aboard needs only a certain minimum knowledge about the ships’ controls, and the operation of the nav electronics. Right now, after boarding, the pilot studies the maneuvering characteristics card, and asks the ship’s officers about the peculiarities of their particular ship. Today’s pilot is a specialist in local navigation and maneuvering. The ship’s own officers are the specialists in wheelhouse equipment. The pilot of today never touches the wheel/jogstick or throttle/EOT. The deck watch does that for him. If the pilot has a question about a particular ARPA radar, he can ask the captain or mate to show him “where the knob is”.

Not so the marine pilot of the future. He or she will be the sole person aboard ship. He or she must be able to override the remote control of a drone ship and steer that ship to safety as soon as he or she is aboard, which means that the marine pilot must be intimately familiar with the layout and actuation of ships controls and electronics, despite never having been on that ship before. Which can only mean that the type of-, placement of-, and actuation of all bridge equipment must be standardized between all drone ships, or at least no more than a couple of three variations (Furuno system versus a Navico System, etc.)

Presently most ships are built as one-offs. There is little standardization regarding the placement and actuation of ship controls and nav electronics from bridge to bridge. Which means there is always a learning curve when you take over a another vessel. Remember how long it took you to learn all those alarms in the dark on your present wheelhouse? You had many watches to learn, and a captain to call if you couldn’t find the watch alarm. A future marine pilot has to know what all of the alarms mean before he or she even steps foot on the drone ship. So, in the drone ship of the future, the wheelhouse will remind us more of an aircraft cockpit than a bridge. The placement and actuation of controls/electronics would be standardized between ships, so any pilot anywhere in the world would be able to take control of any ship upon boarding.

Cockpit standardization wouldn’t be enough, because different ships maneuver differently. There would be an industry providing costly simulation training for those drone ship pilots, particular to each ship. When each drone is launched some IMO standard would require a battery of sea trials be conducted, aimed at establishing maneuvering characteristics for the new vessel, in digital form. These would be downloaded into a simulator by a training vendor. Pilots would then train on the simulator before the real drone ship even enters port, learning how to handle that particular vessel in any emergency.

Would there be a similar requirement for a chief engineer to board with the pilot, to directly oversee a standardized ECR on the drone ship? To be able to light-off standardized IMO-guideline compliant auxiliaries, if needed? (In my mind’s eye I see each person boarding the ship with a lunch box and a portable toilet; no food aboard ship,and would anyone bother to put a MSD on a ship with no crew?)

Legal considerations (I think someone covered this already, maybe KC): right now a marine pilot is not responsible for the safe navigation of the vessel. The captain is. But on a drone ship with no captain aboard? If the ship runs aground shoreward of the seabuoy would the pilot be at fault, or the drone captain sitting in Mumbai? Or would the software engineers be guilty, or the ship owners? If a drone ship with a marine pilot aboard collided with a conventional ship which body of laws would take precedence, drone law, or old Admiralty law, or consumer protection law (because of the software involved)?

I think cajaya’s comment from some months ago still hangs out there: a drone tanker or LNG would be a tempting target for a hacker.

Escort tugs: Right now a tanker entering the Salish Sea must have an escort tug at all times. With drone ships I believe they will be required for ANY vessel over a certain size. Environmental concerns are just too high to allow enormous vessels into sensitive waters without human checks and balances. So the tug industry should do well.

Also, who ties up the ship and hooks up shore power? A little detail to be sure, but someone/ something has to do it, and automation doesn’t work well in this regard, unless the docking facilities are specially designed and built to standardized specifications that don’t exist now, guaranteeing implementation would be costly in the future. Even then, wind and snow will cause problems. So while the drone captain, pilot and tugs hold the vessel at the dock, someone has to go aboard and break out the lines from the self-tensioning winches, etc. If they’re smart the longshore unions will fight for this job. Because once container ships are automated much of the loading/unloading process may become automated also, and they’ll lose much of their work.

When self-driving cars become standardized they will drive themselves on and off car carriers like so many multi-colored sheep, with zero damage. That alone probably sells the idea of self-driving cars to car manufacturers, who, in the past at least, had a sizeable headache with longshoremen damaging cars in the process of unloading the ship.


#210

The pilot will arrive by helicopter. The helicopter will interface with the ship via Bluetooth between it’s skids and the helipad. The pilot will control the ship via his own control room/bridge simulator in his aircraft, which he can customize to suit his needs and he needn’t adapt to the ship’s native controls. He also will have his own personal comforts on the aircraft: washroom, galley, larder. He’ll never have to leave his own craft, see? Now, I don’t know why he bothered to physically fly out to the ship in the first place. He could have telecommuted, I suppose. But that’s why, in the future, I’m nothing but an idle, gob smacked spectator to the miracles of technology.


#211

[QUOTE=ombugge;191140]Are these trucks going to have engineers onboard?[/QUOTE]

Of course not! It’s the F u T u R e!


#212

Hey Ombugge what is land going for on this testing fiord? I see a business opportunity. Bleachers, luxury sky boxes, lawn seating with picnic tables and BBQ pits. People will come and watch the robo ships go at each other. I think you would be a good candidate for the PA announcer “now the Wartsila jumbo will be overtaking the Siemens tanker and crossing the ABB ferry boat. Let’s see what the fuzzy logic adaptive controllers come up with folks”.


#213

[QUOTE=DavidMT;191141]I’m reasonably sure [B][I]levitating [/I][/B] trucks have not in fact been invented yet, but a garbage truck (levitating or not) is offline for at least 16 of 24 hours, in a location mechanics would have access to it and be able preform routine maintenance and repairs.

A ship on the other hand must operate 24 hours a day for several days in a row, and then be shut down for remarkably short periods of time, big difference.

You seem overly sold on the promises of “gee-wiz” technology, people with real world experience tend to be far more skeptical of “foolproof” unbreakable machinery.

Perhaps less time in an ivory tower and more time in a ship yard or at sea would provide you with some insights.[/QUOTE]

You are right, levitating garbage trucks doesn’t exist, but levitating trains does, in China and Japan: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-32391020
Shanghai Maglev was inaugurated in 2004: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PTo-krTSZBA

Driverless trains on metro lines are old hat. In Singapore there are now three MRT lines that are driverless.
Come for a ride with me on Downtown Line 2, which is the latest one, so far: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dm-RRjOBzdA

As to my seagoing and other maritime experience I would be willing to compare with anyone here on this forum, including yours. (I went to sea in 1959)


#214

[QUOTE=ombugge;191154]You are right, levitating garbage trucks doesn’t exist, but levitating trains does, in China and Japan: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-32391020
Shanghai Maglev was inaugurated in 2004: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PTo-krTSZBA[/QUOTE]

I rode that maglev train in Shanghai. It goes between the airport and… No where in particular, in the suburbs somewhe. The normal trains in shanghai are like nothing I have seen before. Very well used. Very dingy, but in a sort of nice, old-fashioned way. Noisy. Jerky. So crouded! On the maglev train everything is new, luxurious, spotless, quiet, covered in red velveteen. I was the only passenger. It was spooky-feeling. And expensive. I took the normal train back to the airport on my way home.

Driverless trains on metro lines are old hat. In Singapore there are now three MRT lines that are driverless.
Come for a ride with me on Downtown Line 2, which is the latest one, so far: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dm-RRjOBzdA

I love the MRT. It’s the best train system in the world. (“the world” in this case consists of Paris, London, Singapore, Shanghai, Portland and Vancouver. I didn’t spend enough time in New York to ride the trains, unfortunately) the MRT, though, I could go on for days. Affordable, extensive, clean, beautiful, the stations are near all these amazing places. And there’s bao nearby. It’s awesome. I’m sure New York is nice, but it isn’t Singapore. Incidentally, our sky trains don’t have operators, either. That’s not at all surprising, though. The sky trains have a dedicated, unshared, access controlled fixed geometry network. There’s no chance of non-sky train vehicles being on the network, and no way a train can be operated outside the network. A train doesnt have to make any choices. So I don’t see how trains are any sort of useful analogy to drone ships.


#215

[QUOTE=KPChief;191148]Hey Ombugge what is land going for on this testing fiord? I see a business opportunity. Bleachers, luxury sky boxes, lawn seating with picnic tables and BBQ pits. People will come and watch the robo ships go at each other. I think you would be a good candidate for the PA announcer “now the Wartsila jumbo will be overtaking the Siemens tanker and crossing the ABB ferry boat. Let’s see what the fuzzy logic adaptive controllers come up with folks”.[/QUOTE]

Hilarious, but I’m sorry to disappoint you, Trondheimsfjorden isn’t a football stadium, or a swimming pool. Here is a link to help on your geographical knowledge: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trondheimsfjord
With the upcoming winter there wouldn’t be many takers to sitting on rocks along the fjord and watch ships, autonomous or otherwise. If they do, it is free, as it is not allowed to block free access to the beaches.

What’s with you guys? Do you think that everything not being done in American is impossible and stupid pipe dreams, though up by some idiots that don’t know what they are doing? Alternatively, egged on by some greedy shipowners that want to do seafarers out of a job? If so, you are ill informed of the world outside USA.

Autonomous ships?? Can’t be done because there is no engineers to change filters, fuses, or whatever.
Offshore wind farms?? Can’t be done in America because it will spoil the view for some rich folks.
Short sea shipping?? Can’t be done because it is not the American way.

What else can’t be done? Oh yes, adopting IMO rules in full and get ride of the GRT/GT confusion.

And while we are at it; adopting the metric system as the official system of measurements, like every developed country in the world.
Why can’t this be done? Beats me, but somebody may want to repeat the same old mantra that it makes you smarter to deal with two systems. I’m not convinced. I believe it cause confusion and accidents.

PS> There is no “land price on this fjord”. It is only water and free for everybody to use as they please.


#216

[QUOTE=ombugge;191167]What’s with you guys? Do you think that everything not being done in American is impossible and stupid pipe dreams, though up by some idiots that don’t know what they are doing? Alternatively, egged on by some greedy shipowners that want to do seafarers out of a job? If so, you are ill informed of the world outside USA.

Autonomous ships?? Can’t be done because there is no engineers to change filters, fuses, or whatever.
Offshore wind farms?? Can’t be done in America because it will spoil the view for some rich folks.
Short sea shipping?? Can’t be done because it is not the American way.[/QUOTE]

Ombugge,
You’re talking to the wrong group. You need to talk to maritime entrepreneurs and venture capitalists, and the Silicon Valley crowd, not professional mariners. Get on a forum at Stanford University and you’ll hear nothing but optimism about autonomous ships and wind power, because those are the men and women who will make it happen. And because they have nothing invested in the past.

My guess is that Gcaptain users skew older. Established Old Salts,with pride in accumulating a lifetime of knowledge, and a vested interest in making sure the knowledge is integral to running the industry. Why should Old Salts welcome autonomous ships, or even WANT to talk about them? I know I’m going to die of old age soon, but I don’t see why I should log onto on a forum to publicly contemplate my inevitable demise. If I was a young person I might drool over the technology. But I’m not. Just as you have, I’ve spent a lifetime learning what I know, and yet I have a sneaking suspicion it will soon be obsolete. Am I supposed to willingly and cheerfully contemplate the coming end of an honorable way of working life? (Though I did just that, in length, a few posts ago, so cut me some slack…) Autonomous ships will replace most maritime jobs in the future. Most men,given a long enough lifespan, will contract prostate cancer. Truth. Check. yay.

As for the young people coming up the pipeline; they’ll do just fine in the New Maritime World Order. Maybe I’m wrong, but I don’t think they follow this fourm in large numbers. If they did, do you think they really want to jump into the discussion, all breathless, Mountain Dew-fueled enthusiasm, comic book tropes, and non-existent punctuation? c.captain is waiting right around the corner to set them straight. No upside for junior to join in this discussion.

Right now, my guess is the drone mariners of tomorrow are busy fitting into a new academy year, learning a lot of lessons that are already obsolescent (“OK, celestial nav class, let’s say the mirror is tarnished on your sextant. Here’s how you use tinfoil from a stick of gum to jury rig that…” OR {Engineering Instructor] “Today, engineering class, we’re going to show you how to smear lube oil on a light bulb to see if a bearing is wearing out!”[Student, from energy efficient Norway] “What’s a light bulb?”).

Most mariners in the U.S. make their money off the oil fields. Not a few of them have been kicked to the curb by the collapse in energy prices. For them, a rise in energy prices is the only future they want to contemplate. Big Oil Pays ; Big Wind Blows. With a little imagination they could imagine offshore windfarms replacing offshore oil rigs. But most mariners I know aren’t big on the “vision” thing. They know what they know. What imagination they have, they save for fantasy football and Maxxim magazine.

Short Sea shipping? Whole other discussion.

Metric system: You have us on that one. We were idiots no to change over wholeheartedly in the late 1970’s, when it was actually law (most people forget that). We don’t do it now for one reason alone: nameless, baseless fear.

In short, Ombugge, the bright future you announce will come to pass in the U.S. Other Americans are working hard on it. But the audience you’re addressing is, to a large degree, not going to be working into that future. And some will be casualties of it.

By the way, you never answered my question from some weeks ago: Is it true that in Norway every boy gets a jetpack, and every girl a unicorn, for their 10th birthday?


#217

With only one battery powered ferry in operation so far, Norway is looking at the next step, Hydrogen powered ferries: http://www.tu.no/artikler/i-2015-ble...ael-nas/358972

At the same time the technology for autonomous ships will be tested in Trondheimsfjorden: http://gcaptain.com/norway-designate...tm_medium=push

Will these two technologies be combined on the hydrogen powered ferries of the future?? VERY likely


#218

[QUOTE=Emrobu;191158]I rode that maglev train in Shanghai. It goes between the airport and… No where in particular, in the suburbs somewhe. The normal trains in shanghai are like nothing I have seen before. Very well used. Very dingy, but in a sort of nice, old-fashioned way. Noisy. Jerky. So crouded! On the maglev train everything is new, luxurious, spotless, quiet, covered in red velveteen. I was the only passenger. It was spooky-feeling. And expensive. I took the normal train back to the airport on my way home.

I love the MRT. It’s the best train system in the world. (“the world” in this case consists of Paris, London, Singapore, Shanghai, Portland and Vancouver. I didn’t spend enough time in New York to ride the trains, unfortunately) the MRT, though, I could go on for days. Affordable, extensive, clean, beautiful, the stations are near all these amazing places. And there’s bao nearby. It’s awesome. I’m sure New York is nice, but it isn’t Singapore. Incidentally, our sky trains don’t have operators, either. That’s not at all surprising, though. The sky trains have a dedicated, unshared, access controlled fixed geometry network. There’s no chance of non-sky train vehicles being on the network, and no way a train can be operated outside the network. A train doesnt have to make any choices. So I don’t see how trains are any sort of useful analogy to drone ships.[/QUOTE]

It is not “a train” that is driverless but an entire fleet of trains running at 2-3 min. intervals at peak hours. They avoid running into each other by autonomous system, but being monitored from a central control station.

The trains can be manually controlled from panels at each end. I have seen staff riding onboard trains to take control, if necessary. This only happen if there are some sort of alarm, not amounting to a major risk.
How do I know? I asked the person when this happened at the startup of the DTL 2.
As far as I know, manual control have never be used, except for drill and tests.

Here is a picture of the control panel and emergency exit on one of the DTL 2 trains:


Control panel is under the cover on the right.

Same on the older NEL trains:

Relevance to autonomous ships? That an entire metro system with several lines and a large fleet of trains can operate autonomously without major problems since 2009.
Maybe more surprising; without the public getting into fits of worries about safety, or unions shutting down the city in protest. But then this is in Singapore, where people trust their Government and people to drive trains are in short supply. The two oldest MRT lines have drivers still, mostly foreign however.


#219

Maybe this is a good reason for developing autonomous ships?: http://www.marinemec.com/news/view,violations-of-the-ship-collision-regulations_44560.htm

This article speaks of the need for such ships in the aging US fleet: https://www.inverse.com/article/13335-autonomous-cargo-ships-are-arriving-just-in-time-for-the-sailor-poor-u-s
Rather confusing, mixing in torpedoes and underwater vehicles with military need for ships and seafarers.

It does appear to be an attempt at developing autonomous boats in America: http://www.sea-machines.com/#technology

The US Navy is advancing their technology, but for a different usage: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-military-robot-ship-idUSKCN0X42I4


#220

Things are developing faster than have been though: http://www.tu.no/artikler/det-vi-trodde-skulle-skje-om-10-15-ar-det-skjer-allerede-na/358920

Will the first remotely controlled (drone) vessel be a reality first in Finland or in Norway??
Most likely a ferry in Finland will win that price. Plans are afoot to do so very soon: http://www.marinemec.com/news/view,finferries-and-esl-shipping-join-autonomous-vessel-research-project_42561.htm

Fully autonomous ships are still a few years away. It is a toss-up who gets there first. Singapore is throwing their hat into the ring as well. (The Singapore Navy already have done patrol boats in the water)


#221

Not only ships but your home will be “autonomous” in the future. At least the gadgets to control most things in your home is already here: http://www.dn.no/dagensavis/2016/10/11/2143/Teknologi/fremtidsdrommer-i-smartby

I can see a problem if the toaster gets into a quarrel with the coffee machine in the morning though.