Technologies That Will Lead Maritime Industry in 2018

A forecast made by industry leaders and engineers foresee how advancements in technology, such as the development in robotics, will help take the industry to new heights this year. These new pieces of technology are poised to change the face of IT and digitization in the industry.


Although shipowners are already aware of these changes in terms of vessel emissions and smarter fleet management, it is still crucial for them to know the developments in robotics, deep learning computers, and alike, which will likely be in demand, especially in maritime transport and exploration sectors.


Here are the top technologies that experts see that can potentially bring positively influence to shipping operations worldwide


Autonomous surface vessels

The previous year was dedicated to develop and manufacture autonomous surface vessels, but 2018 will be the year that they will be formally tested and demonstrated. Aiming to illustrate how unmanned and commercial craft could be developed in the near future, the construction of the world’s first autonomous commercial vessels will begin this year. Furthermore, shipowners will have the opportunity to test the market to help them identify which technology to adopt in the future.


Virtual reality (VR)

No longer will they be used solely for gaming and entertainment, the maritime and shipping industries will use this technology, particularly in training and education. It will be utilized for ship design and engineering processes by evaluating ship interiors, piping requirements, electrical networks and personnel movements in emergencies.



Although drone technology is already being used for years now, they still need to be enhanced to meet the demands of maritime applications. Drones can provide pieces of information to surveyors on areas that are difficult to reach, especially on ships and offshore structures. They can also be used for delivering parcels to vessels near coastlines and navigating in glacial conditions to provide more information to ship owners and manufacturers. Another segment of the industry that experts see drones fit to use is for testing vessel emissions.



With the increasing interest of developing autonomous vessels, industry leaders and experts see the need for the utilization of robotics. This will take away as many human intervention as possible, but some see that the removal of this element in navigation can lead to a myriad of challenges that involve manual labor such as line handling. However, manufacturers and developers are looking for ways to build robots that can perform these operations with remove control assistance from human crew members.
Technology and the maritime industry have always gone hand in hand in order to deliver services to even the most remote and dangerous parts of the world. Some of the aforementioned trends may still be under development, and others are well advanced. But truly, with these technologies coupled with the enhanced maritime training that seafarers receive in the Philippines, maritime industry will continue to advance in 2018 and the years to come.

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