Interaction Between Manned and Autonomous Ships: Automation Transparency
Chapter, Conference object, Peer reviewed
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Maritime Autonomous Surface Ships (MASS) is on the research agenda of several countries. In Norway a 120 TEU autonomous container feeder is currently being built. Hopes are attached to safety as well as costs and efficiency benefits. The explicit assumption is that with no humans on the bridge “human error” will go away. However, great challenges will be found in the interaction between MASS and humans on the bridges of other SOLAS and non-SOLAS vessels. An unanswered question is whether a MASS should transmit that she is in autonomous mode or if she should remain anonymous, just as any other ship? This discussion paper argues for the first alternative. Arguments are also given for “automation transparency,” methods allowing other seafarers to “look into the mind” of the autonomous ship, to see if they themselves are detected and what is the present intentions of the MASS.