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Marine Automation 20151107c

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Marine Automation 20151107c

  1. 1. Marine Automation: Technological Possibilities and Human Limitations Stephen Wright MIMarEST SanSailTEC, LLC swright@sansailtec.com SNAME WMTC T&R Program November 6, 2015 11:45 - 12:15 EST
  2. 2. Good morning The presentation today explores the limits and challenges of remote and autonomous commercial ship operations, especially regarding US-flag vessels. We will address the history of commercial vessel automation and look to its future. We will explain several key elements that must be quantified and addressed by a well-designed marine automation system – especially an autonomous system. We will help define the line between engineering and popular acceptance.
  3. 3. PLC ship system Washington State Ferry control cabinet. This vessel uses an engine order telegraph and electric propulsion – a mix of old and new.
  4. 4. Our objectives today • Existing commercial ship automation • Where did shipboard automation come from? • How fast is it changing? • What limits its growth? • How automatic are ships today? • Remote and autonomous commercial ships • Are they possible technically? Are they possible socially? • Is ROV/AUV technology scalable? • Are present rules sufficient for the ship of the future?
  5. 5. Some points to look for • What kind of commercial ships are likely to automate further? • Is the autonomous ship really unmanned? • How limiting is the lack of technology transfer between the ROV/AUV community and surface craft designers? • What if the first automated vessels in the US are built to American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) standards?
  6. 6. Existing Automation • Engine room automation • Power management and automated systems such as ballast water, control air, anti-heeling, fuel purification, bilge treatment, etc. • ACC and ACCU from ABS; similar notations from other class societies • Bridge electronics • Integrated bridge systems prove the whole greater than the sum of its parts. ECDIS and ARPA; solid-state gyro-compasses with accelerometers. • Auto-pilot systems with memory, like a pilot’s • Safety systems • Fire systems with graphic interfaces and automated responses • Intrusion and perimeter control; auto-ballasting systems; CCTV
  7. 7. Existing Automation • Propulsion systems • Twin-screw synchronization systems - old school • Hybrid propulsion • Batteries and “power take-off/power take-in” systems (PTO/PTI) • Slow speed marine engine dynamic optimization is now available from large engine manufacturers to optimize for fuel cost or for schedule. • Water and cargo systems • Auto-ballasting; anti-heel systems; automated tank-washing; automated loading and discharge systems; auto-loading bulkers
  8. 8. A matter of degree Ships already have centralized lineups of switchgear actuated remotely. Each of these motor controllers has a “Hand/Off/Auto” or “Hand/Off/Remote” switch. It is only a question of how remote or how automatic.
  9. 9. Automation possibilities - Remote • Complete remote operation is possible • Transas and Kongsberg training simulators resolved many issues • ROV/AUV developments are largely scalable to commercial vessels • Department of Defense drone deployments are more challenging than operating a ship at 12 knots. • Refining oil or building a car on an assembly line are each more complicated than operating a ship at sea. • Remote operation is limited by telecommunications reliability and bandwidth. In short – weather.
  10. 10. Old school STD and VME Busses allowed plug-in modules, unlike this more typical shipboard installation. This board would take longer to repair and have a greater chance of repair error than plug in board.
  11. 11. Automation possibilities – Autonomous • Completely autonomous operation is possible • Early programmable logic controllers (PLCs) did what relay-logic and bread- board op-amp controls could not do. They were special because they were modular and reprogrammable; expandable and scalable. PLCs automated discrete activities well and automated processes less-well. • Process control took PLC batch control to real-time. Continuous process control streamlined commodity production but in so doing made control of all real-time processes possible. Still expandable and scalable, the software possibilities expanded beyond Relay Ladder Logic (RLL) with ASCII subroutines to C++ and more advanced languages capable of better utilizing processor power in real time. Batch processing of oil refineries made autonomous ships possible.
  12. 12. Central monitoring Ships like this have push-button redundancy, often automatic lead/lag or master/slave redundant motors or pumps. Pushing the selector switch can be automated – but can changing the motor or cleaning the strainer?
  13. 13. Automation has been around • Completely autonomous operation has been possible for a long time is possible • STD Bus was 8-bit • VME Bus opened up 16-bit process control using 6800 Motorola processors • VME expanded to 32-bit and 64-bit versions • These industrial bus standards, later becoming IEC and DIN standards, facilitated the equivalent of the “internet of things” on an industrial scale in the 1980s. • The heart of the Apple, the heart of the MAC – the 6800, was now ready for service in producing other things, not “merely” processing data. • But how do things become represented as data?
  14. 14. Early shipboard automation 8088 and 8086-based modules ran many European ships in the 1980s. EEPROM chips were burned with the program – all 16K of it. We can still program those chips in assembly language and burn them in our PROM- burner. Around 2000, we had to buy a gross of the memory chips to replace one chip. Anyone need 143 16K 8-bit chips?
  15. 15. Input/output modules – The five senses of data • Unlike humans, data has many more senses: pH, salinity, specific gravity, viscosity, x-ray vision, sonar-sensing, thermal imaging. The machine is only limited by the I/O. • Even the most primitive ACCU system aboard ship can monitor any and every characteristic in 24 milliseconds. Even midshipmen do not move that fast. • Analogue to digital converters allow proportional integral derivative (PID) algorithms to run in stable software instead of as thermally- sensitive capacitive shorting circuits used in the 1960s. • Input/Output modules use more than five senses.
  16. 16. 1980s control boards
  17. 17. Modern Input/output This is a marine-rated analogue input/output device that would replace six card slots in one of the previous slides. These are more reliable that the old ones and may last the life of the ship.
  18. 18. Input/output modules – The “five senses” of data • Each subsystem is a self-sufficient loop doing its part in a larger loop and answering to the demands of the central processing unit. Distributed I/O systems use a pyramid structure to keep most of the processing local and the supervision not burdened with massive data flows. • This hierarchy of interdependent self-reliance is the key to a ship without a crew. • Existing ACCU standards will have to be expanded for autonomous ships. • Required redundancy: N+1 becomes N+2 or N+3 on a ship without a crew • The technology is all here, the specification has not been completed
  19. 19. 1980’s human machine interface
  20. 20. Modern human machine interface Removable programming unit on the left side of the photo that replaces a PROM burner in a modern ship. Touch screen to the right replaces a wall of annunciators and ten-turn potentiometers.
  21. 21. The 1980s ship was almost as automated as the 2015 ship. The technology has improved but not the culture – at least not in the US. This three-panel lineup would be a half panel today but the ship probably has the same number of points monitored...maybe a few more.
  22. 22. The learning-capable automation system • An automation system can apply simultaneous analysis and comparisons in real time, learning from system history to better anticipate responses providing more appropriate system corrections with each iteration of its ever-improving response curves. • In an autonomous ship, the system learns the ship just as a crew would, but all system information is shared, not subjectively compartmentalized, as with a human crew. • The engineering challenge is to parse and save the data while gleaning all that can be learned from it. A complex system has large data needs. There is no data center at sea. • What is done at sea and what is done on land is part of the developing methods of control.
  23. 23. The price of success One benefit of rapid response to change is reduced failure of equipment – problems are caught sooner. The inconvenient side of this responsiveness is nuisance trips. How do you evaluate nuisance trips without a crew?
  24. 24. Ship-automation limitations • The limitations on autonomous vessels are not technical; they are social. We can build and operate a remote-controlled or autonomous vessel today. But our neighbors may not let us. • Only scientific risk-analysis can determine actual risk • Perceived risk is often at odds with science • Here it is a relative risk, not an absolute risk. We compare an autonomous vessel to a crewed vessel and compare the cargo risk and vessel risk. • The actual risks include equipment failure and malicious interference – hackers on line or pirates on speedboats.
  25. 25. Remote-capable citadel ship
  26. 26. Ship-automation limitations • The limitations on autonomous vessels are social. Anticipated skeptics include labor unions and environmental organizations. • The likely cargoes are water, crude oil, coal, iron, bauxite, Portland cement, pet coke or other low-cost, heavy cargoes with no time constraints. • The ideal autonomous ship will slow-bell across the earth with steadfast determination and maximum efficiency. • The first autonomous ships will not be box ships with frequent stops and complex loading procedures. • Tankers and bulkers natural auto-ships, especially in the Pacific Ocean.
  27. 27. Non-lethal anti-boarding systems
  28. 28. Questions for further study 1. Marine Automation Parity: a. Why does US marine automation trail behind US industrial automation technology by several years? b. Why does the US trail Europe in marine automation? c. What role does Navy procurement play in this disparity? 2. Marine Automation Market Penetration: 1. Why is the marine business among the least automated in the US? 3. Marine Automation 1. Are the decision-makers too old? 2. Is it a closed market due to the Jones Act? 3. Do the consumers, rate-payers and taxpayers pay the price? 4. What can be done to help the marine industry catch up to manufacturing sector in use of technology? What can SNAME do?
  29. 29. Stephen Wright SNAME NY Met Section IMarEST Eastern USA Branch SanSailTEC, LLC 917-374-2836 swright@sansailtec.com

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