Blog post

Future possibilities for autonomous vessels

Steve Conde, on secondment from the U.S. Coast Guard, recently visited AHTI and was impressed and excited by the possibilities for a hands-on marine inspector like himself.

Sarah Barrett

Senior Marketing Manager

We’re delighted to be joined for a few months at Wärtsilä Voyage by Steve Conde, who’s on a year-long, career-broadening assignment from the U.S Coast Guard with different organisations. Steve is a marine inspector with 17 years’ experience in maritime, and the focus of his current assignment is autonomous vessels. 

Steve recently visited AHTI to experience the technology we have on board. This is what he thought: 

It was impressive to see

Having unlimited access to a vessel to conduct experimentation and testing of new technologies and innovations produces invaluable data. Not every software developer or engineer has maritime experience or has even been onboard a boat, therefore AHTI provides perspective which in turn will influence the team’s approach and assumptions around product development.   

It also facilitates clear communications and the immediate exchange with end users, including potential customers, of essential feedback, recommendations and ideas to foster product improvement and informed decision-making.   

In addition to Wärtsilä Voyage products, I found it impressive that AHTI is also equipped with hardware developed by other organisations, to support innovation and data collection. In my opinion, this is the type of synergistic collaboration and partnership which are essential steps to making these technologies a reality in the maritime domain. 

Last week I had the opportunity to ride aboard AHTI through the Port of Hamburg and witness demonstrations of new products currently in development. It was impressive to see, and it really put into perspective the future possibilities for a hands-on marine inspector like myself.   

What really stood out from my experience was the response from AHTI’s master, Hendrik Bußhoff, when asked by potential customers who were on board for a demonstration, if AHTI was project complete. He said something to the extent of: 'AHTI will never be done. If we’re done, that means we have stopped innovating'.

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