First boat in the world that autonomously sails the most optimal route.
Rotterdam The Netherlands, September 21, 2020 – Maritime service provider KOTUG International, shipbuilding company Rotortug®, and tech start-up Captain AI today demonstrated the first boat in the world that autonomously sails the most optimal route without human intervention at the Smart Shipping event of the Netherlands Forum for Smart Shipping. A significant milestone on the road towards fully autonomous and sustainable sailing.
In collaboration with Captain AI, safe autonomous sailing with the Rotortug ® “RT Borkum was demonstrated on the river Nieuwe Maas in Rotterdam with the use of the Captain AI Route Planner and Autopilot. “The route planner can be seen as the Google Maps for waterways,” says Vincent Wegener of Captain AI. “It draws out the route, which the boat follows autonomously using our autopilot software.”
To plan this route as efficiently as possible, Captain AI’s software is connected to the KOTUG Optiport dispatch planning software, enabling optimized route planning in real-time, based on AIS data and Artificial Intelligence.
Patrick Everts of KOTUG: “The digital captain has to know what the vessel’s destination is and how to get there in the most efficient way. Linking Captain AI’s software to OptiPort is not only making the skipper’s life easier because vessels can autonomously navigate the optimal route, but is also saving on fuel and CO2 emissions”.
The “RT Borkum” has undergone several successful operational tests already in the busiest port of Europe, proving the combination of autonomous planning and autonomous sailing in practice for the first time.
KOTUG International and Captain AI have entered into a partnership to further develop and commercialize the software. The next step is making the software suitable for large-scale applications and to explore matters such as safety and legislation together with the users and legislators.