In the shipping industry there is a development to reduce the workload for the bridge crew, save labor costs and to provide assistance for safer navigation. Important enablers of this development are advanced systems for navigation support that also pave the way towards autonomous shipping. This will ultimately lead to ships that sail fully autonomous. But before that different levels of automation offering extra navigation support have to be achieved.
At the moment radar and AIS (automated identification system) are important navigation support systems. However according to the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (COLREG), visual classification of vessels and other objects at sea is a requirement for safe navigation. Especially during night time conditions video cameras are needed to detect navigation lights of objects at sea such as vessels, buoys, windmills and offshore platforms. It is expected that after capturing the navigation lights with video, utilizing image processing techology and artificial intelligence it will be possible to detect the object or vessel and to determine it's distance, size and possible speed and heading. Such a system will provide usefull information to support the crew avoiding collisions. A next step would be that the navigation system also executes according to COLREG without having continous manned outlook on the bridge.
Additionally technology is needed to combine the input of video with the input of radar, AIS and digital sea maps, to strenghten the reliability of the navigation information.
This leading Dutch system integrator of electrical and automation systems aboard is looking for partners with technology to detect vessels and other objects at sea by their navigation lights and also to match this information with information from other sources such as radar, AIS and digital sea maps. It aims to set up a cooperative pilot/research project to investigate the feasibility within the framework of a research cooperation agreement.
This technology request is an innovation challenge that is published on an open innovation platform. If interest in cooperation with this firm is expressed, the potential partner will be guided to this open innovation platform on which he can get in touch with the company via a chat function. Mind that posts on this platform are not confidential. Besides open discussion on the platform, sharing of confidential information will be made possible on demand. After closing of the open inovation platform on December 5th, the firm will start selecting the partners that will be invited for further contact. Expressions of interest that are made after December 5th will be handled as usual in the Enterprise Europe Network.