Vuosaari involved in developing autonomous traffic
As autonomous vessels become more commonplace, ports must be prepared to provide vessels with sufficient information about the fairway area. The first autonomous vessels will be those that serve the harbour, such as tugs and ferries.
“It is particularly important for ports to have accurate situational awareness throughout the entire voyage, all the way into harbour,” says Iiro Lindborg, General Manager, Remote and Autonomous Solutions at Rolls-Royce.
In various parts of the world, such as Singapore and Rotterdam, ports are setting up monitoring systems.
“However, ports are only just taking their first steps in this direction,” Lindborg says.
A sensor test project has been underway in Vuosaari for one year, using lidar (laser scanning) to create real-time 3D mapping data.
“The ports will decide whether to generate status information on vessels or from the port.”
According to Lindborg, the first functional systems will be put into use in the first half of the next decade.
In addition to Vuosaari, the status data required for autonomous traffic is being tested at the Port of Rauma, where a smart fairway is in use. Last year, a test area dubbed Jaakonmeri was opened in the waters outside Rauma to enable autonomous vessels to be tested.