The subsidiary of Hyundai Heavy Industries signed an MOU with the American maritime classification society to get the AIP for the implementation


Avikus, a subsidiary of HHI Group, signed an MOU with ABS in Las Vegas. (Credit: Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) Group)

Avikus, a South Korea-based provider of autonomous navigation technologies for ships, has joined forces with the American Bureau of Shipping (ABS) for carrying out real-life trials of autonomous ship technologies.

The subsidiary of Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) Group signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the American maritime classification society to get the approval in principle (AIP) for the implementation.

An announcement in this connection was made at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2022 in Las Vegas, US.

ABS, which is a member of the International Association of Classification Societies (IACS), is engaged in identifying technological suitability in the shipping industry. Besides, it picks the relevant criteria for cutting-edge maritime technology and offshore structures while encouraging the stable development of the maritime industry.

ABS executive vice president and chief operating officer John McDonald said: “Autonomous vessels will have a significant role to play in the future of maritime transportation but they will need to be at least as safe as existing vessels. It will take extensive research and development activity, teamwork and sharing of expertise among the leading maritime players to get us there.

“That’s why this agreement is a game changer, as it unites ABS’ insight with HHI’s expertise to develop practical applications of the technology.”

HHI Group said that Avikus has commenced stage-by-stage demonstration tests for its multiple solutions in accordance with the ABS Guide for Autonomous and Remote Control Functions published last July.

Avikus’ solutions that are being tested include the Hyundai Intelligent Navigation Assistant System (HiNAS), Hyundai Intelligent Navigation Assistant System 2.0 (HiNAS2.0), and Hyundai Intelligence Berthing Assistance System (HiBAS).

By carrying out the tests, Avikus is expected to get each of its certificates by stage for its autonomous vessel technologies. ABS, on its part, will study the design, regulate testing procedures, as well as verify the execution for each stage based on Avikus’ actual operation data.

Avikus CEO Do-hyeong Lim said: “The agreement with ABS holds a great significance as it promotes the technology standardization through the stage-by-stage certification of Avikus’ proprietary technologies. With these commitments, we will contribute to expanding the autonomous vessel market and proactively preoccupy the related markets.”