Robosys and SEA.AI have created a first of-its-kind machine vision-based maritime autonomous surface collision avoidance system.

Robosys SEA AI Voyager

Source: Robosys

Robosys and SEA.AI have created a first of-its-kind machine vision-based maritime autonomous surface collision avoidance system

Developed for an Indian shipping operator operating in the Mumbai region, this is the first commercial vessel to feature this integrated perception system to support both crewed and uncrewed operations, including for remote and autonomous maritime operations.

“In 2022 Robosys and SEA.AI first identified the need to provide the additional optical reassurance to crewed and uncrewed vessels, through providing the visual aspect of watchkeeping, thereby supporting COILREGS Rule 5 Visual Lookout, without fatigue and enhanced consistency,” said Nigel Lee, CSO, Robosys.

”It is great to experience the first vessel now utilising this unique and essential solution, which will contribute to helping create safer seas and potentially save lives.”

Intelligent navigation

Integration of Robosys’ Voyager AI intelligent navigation software, together with SEA.AI’s Sentry, enables vessels to benefit from obstacle and collision avoidance that is further enhanced by non-fatigue optical algorithms.

The Robosys-SEA.AI’s systems integrate via software interfaces to provide early alerts to crews and remote operation hubs regarding objects on the surface of the water. Using the latest camera technology in combination with artificial intelligence (AI), SEA.AI detects and classifies objects, including those that are not obvious when using conventional systems like radar or AIS.

Whilst the machine vision system primarily enhances safety, provides superior, no fatiguing, 360° situational awareness and surveillance for commercial vessels, government craft, first responders and motor yachts, Voyager AI itself also brings wider benefits such as improved fuel efficiency through smart path planning.

The integrated SEA.AI machine vision system analyses all the pixels coming from the set of thermal and low light cameras to detect and assess the level of risk of the floating objects around the vessel. This  technology uses latest deep learning capabilities and ever-growing proprietary database of 9+ millions of annotated marine objects to classify the type of floating hazards detected.

The Voyager AI system then either recommends or manoeuvres the vessel taking in to account all navigation, shipping and ENC hazards. Voyager AI is proven onboard vessels up to 320m.

Installation of the integrated Robosys’ Voyager AI and SEA.AI’s system is now complete, with the first vessel due to start sea trials.