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Master Mariner
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bell ringer
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About time shipping got into gear, after all we suppose to have flying cars by now yet are just getting self driving ones!
 

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Learning the HARD way...
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Despite the article's claim to the contrary, I see this as a potential boon to piracy... Any security system can be overcome, given enough time alone with the vessel.

And what about the international agreements to render assistance to stricken vessels? How is a robo-ship going to provide assistance?
 

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Administrator
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If Google gets a driverless car the ships should do the same.

Trucks should have their own interstate roads where they can be driverless too. Shove them in at the beginning of the road and have a driver go pick it up at the end before the city. Would stop the road deaths from tired drugged drivers. Have a bingle and no one is hurt. Free up a few police from standing behind trees, too.

Ships with smelly captains can do the same.. take the ship 20nms off the port and jump off in a RIB. Out at sea theres bugger all. No one does collision detection by eye because its already been done by AIS and RADAR and soon by satellite.

Look at it this way, if the airforce can shoot a peanut butter jar at 15 nms from the plane from a comfy chair 10,000 miles away why can't a computer twiddle the Auto Pilot buttons?
 

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And what about the international agreements to render assistance to stricken vessels? How is a robo-ship going to provide assistance?
If no one is on ships who do you need to rescue? The coupla sailboats that cross oceans in a set month or two of the year?
 

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Oh, yes, of course. In Australia its the unions that have been holding that up. The Indian Pacific railroad is 3,000 miles and has the longest straight stretch of railway in the world of 500kms.

And theres only one passenger train that goes twice a week so thats avoidable.

It should have been automated years ago
 

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Learning the HARD way...
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If no one is on ships who do you need to rescue? The coupla sailboats that cross oceans in a set month or two of the year?
The points being that
  • should another vessel with people aboard require assistance, there is little that an unmanned ship could do to help. Instead it would just sail on by...
  • when a critical mechanical failure (say steering or propulsion system) occurs on an automated ship, what do you do? Write off the entire ship and cargo, and let insurance pay for whatever the ship drifts/powers into? This seems a little like playing Russian Roulette on a much grander scale.
 

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bell ringer
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The points being that
  • should another vessel with people aboard require assistance, there is little that an unmanned ship could do to help. Instead it would just sail on by...so they should man a boat just so a stupid cruiser has a way out???
  • when a critical mechanical failure (say steering or propulsion system) occurs on an automated ship, what do you do? Write off the entire ship and cargo, and let insurance pay for whatever the ship drifts/powers into? This seems a little like playing Russian Roulette on a much grander scale.
ever heard of helicopters?
I'm sure there would be a period of low manning on crews WAY before total unmanned.
 

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How long until the first unmanned ship is pirated by hacking the control systems?

Perhaps they would each need a computerized self defense system as well.

With all those computers on board would the current 13 man crews made up of mates and seamen and engineers simply become 20 man crews of computer technicians?

My experience (some years ago) has been that the least reliable comms/computer systems shipboard are satellite systems that need complex three axis control systems. They tanked frequently and needed relentlessly aggressive fine tuning. Can't do remote maintenance of computer systems using unreliable systems for the off board link.

What will happen to Lloyds' rates in the shift from mates to bytes?
 

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How long until the first unmanned ship is pirated by hacking the control systems?
Perfect. No crew to ransom.

More than that... if theres no crew held hostage the navy can do an armed boarding... or security people.



Mark
 
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Mermaid Hunter
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How long until the first unmanned ship is pirated by hacking the control systems?
... or terrorists - an LNG tanker hijacked could be a significant concern.

With all those computers on board would the current 13 man crews made up of mates and seamen and engineers simply become 20 man crews of computer technicians?
Most of the IT work can be done remotely.

Technology can easily turn crew on ships at sea into small numbers of day ladies but I don't see wholly unmanned in the near future.
 

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Somalian pirates sitting at their consols in Mogadishu hack into the control program of an LG tanker any where in the world and drive it up the Hudson,threatening to blow it up unless.
 

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Trucks should have their own interstate roads where they can be driverless too. Shove them in at the beginning of the road and have a driver go pick it up at the end before the city. Would stop the road deaths from tired drugged drivers. Have a bingle and no one is hurt. Free up a few police from standing behind trees, too.
Yeah, I'll bet the American Taxpayer/Consumer will be more than happy to pay for a duplicate Interstate Highway System just for trucks...

Dream on...
 

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Once known as Hartley18
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Well, if I thought commercial vessels were a danger to sailing boats before, I think in a decade we'll all be in deadly peril.
Are Rolls-Royce's 'robo-ships' the future of seafaring?
Are Rolls-Royce's 'robo-ships' the future of seafaring? - CNN.com
Is this taking economics too far?
Sorry to rain on your parade, but this isn't a new idea:

I remember the Port of Singapore Authority (PSA) talking about automated ships (looking very, very similar to the Rolls-Royce ones) in their vision for the future - back in 1998!

The reasons PSA never developed the concept, despite the economic advantages they could demonstrate back then also, are the same reasons it isn't going to happen this time around either. They realised pretty quickly that it takes more than technology to get a ship safely from one port to another.
 
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