Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with SK Shipping, Intel, Microsoft, the Ulsan Center for Creative Economy & Innovation (UCCEI), and the Daejeon Center for Creative Economy & Innovation (DCCEI) for the development of an Eco System for 'Smart Ships'.

The signing partners of the MOU will collaborate to help domestic, small and medium-sized information and communications technology (ICT) companies to develop ’17 Ship Service Software’, which will meet the needs of shipowners for safe ship operation and improved crew well-being.

The Ship Service Software, which is being planned for development, will be applied to smart ships by 2019.

"We see that customised and value-added software will play a role in reviving the industry."

It is designed to enable ballast tank inspection, remote medical treatment services for crews, virtual reality training, automatic voyage information reporting, and key equipment maintenance.

As part of the MOU, HHI and SK Shipping will offer technological mentoring services and smart ship platforms for the software to be developed and UCCEI and DCCEI will conduct briefing sessions on technology demand for shipbuilders and shipping liners to encourage them to participate with ICT companies.

Hyundai Heavy Industries official noted: “The Korean shipbuilding industry has developed on the back of the advanced manufacturing technology but now is the time for us to shift our focus to differentiated ship service technologies.

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“We see that customised and value-added software will play a role in reviving the industry.”

Recently, HHI and Accenture had unveiled OceanLink, a version of smart ship, for the shipbuilding, shipping and onshore-logistics sectors.

OeanLink, with a network of sensors and analytics software enables shipowners to monitor status and condition of ships in real time and have a wide range of ship operation information including weather, location and onboard equipment and cargo status data at their disposal.

Image: Members representing HHI, SK Shipping, Intel, Microsoft, UCCEI and DCCEI at the Smart Ship MOU signing. Photo: Courtesy of Hyundai Heavy Industries.