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MARIN makes practical contribution to the development of Autonomous Sailing

A great deal of debate and speculation surrounds autonomous sailing. And while MARIN does not pretend to know all the answers, we are taking practical steps to assist in its development.

standards, but at the same time, a reduction in manning. MARIN is focusing on three main areas in relation to autonomous sailing. We believe it is important to study the ship in relation to traffic control, to understand nautical safety issues and the definition of new manning roles, including those onshore.


Additionally, in an effort to further research into autonomous sailing, MARIN, together with the Dutch maritime industry, has already started a new Joint Industry Project. Within ‘Autonomous Sailing’ we will look together into the available technology required.

Here we outline the various roles control and vessel modelling play in the development of autonomous sailing.

Egbert Ypma & Johan de Jong

14 report

Control Without heading, position and track control, seakeeping and manoeuvring model tests would not be possible. Conclusions and predictions about the

he introduction of further autonomy in shipping firstly aims to facilitate much higher safety

performance of the whole system inevitably include the performance of the controlled system. The best control possible is therefore essential for MARIN. The performance of the control system should not be dominating the outcome of simulations and model tests unless it was supposed to. A control system is used to

A real-life traffic situation (AIS) with the no-go conflict areas as seen from the black vessel’s perspective (arrow). The vessels are shown with their trail and ship domain.

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