Japanese shipping major Mitsui O.S.K. Lines is to launch the experimental use of a system that supports ship operation during voyages using augmented reality (AR) technology aboard a new very large crude carrier (VLCC).
The experimental version of the system, which was jointly developed by Furuno Electric and MOL Techno-Trade, would be installed aboard the VLCC Suzukasan, slated for delivery on October 12.
The technology was earlier installed on a FLEXIE car carrier, the Beluga Ace, for an initial trial that started in March 2018. Based on the feedback from the trial process, the AR display screen was upgraded and now allows the officer on watch to check important voyage information such as the speed of other vessels, the closest approach time, and the closest approach distance.
Suzukasan will continue demonstration tests aimed at verifying the performance of the AR display screen. The project would allow information, such as ships sailing in the vicinity and landmarks like buoys at sea, to be shown on tablets and other displays, based on data from the Automatic Identification System (AIS). Images of landscapes taken from the bridge would also be visible and these would overlap with AR to provide visual support to crewmembers operating ships and keeping watch during voyages.