Samsung shipyard verifies 5G-based autonomous driving platform for ships

By Lim Chang-won Posted : December 10, 2019, 14:54 Updated : December 10, 2019, 14:54

[Courtesy of SK Telecom]

SEOUL -- Samsung Heavy Industries, one of South Korea's top three shipbuilders, has used a 5G-based test ship to verify technology for autonomous sailing. The 3.3-meter-long vessel equipped with auto-pilot and inertial navigation systems was tested in waters near the shipyard and remotely controlled from an inland center about 250 kilometers (155 miles) away.

Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) said that through the test run Sunday off the southern island of Goje, the shipbuilder successfully verified its autonomous driving technology, which allows ships to avoid obstacles around them while navigating the optimal shipping route by themselves, as well as remote operation technology, which controls vessels from a distance.

If direct control is needed, the control center in the central city of Daejeon operated the test vessel in real-time through a 5G network. The test vessel was equipped with Lidar, a laser-based environment detecting system, and a cloud-based IoT solution. Five high-performance cameras can check the location of obstacles and surrounding images.

"It means a lot as we have secured an optimal research environment for the advancement of autonomous sailing technology through the combination of SHI's remote and autonomous operation system with SK Telecom's ultra-fast 5G communication technology," SHI's research institute head Shim Yong-rae said in a statement.

SHI has partnered with DNV GL, an international accredited registrar and classification society headquartered in Norway, to develop smart ship technology.
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