The Mayflower 400-The First Intelligent Ship to Navigate the Ocean

Bill Lescher

November 1, 2022

To navigate, the Mayflower 400 uses automation software, Watson, and computer vision. The ship has more than 50 sensors to make it able to navigate in the ocean. This technology offers the Mayflower 400 several advantages, including speed and safety. The onboard AI Captain, Watson, uses Watson and computer vision to navigate the vessel.

Mayflower 400’s onboard AI Captain uses computer vision, automation software, and Watson.

The onboard AI Captain of the Mayflower 400 uses computer vision, automation software, and Watson to navigate the ship and make decisions. The AI trained on thousands of images and photographs to ensure a safe voyage. It also monitors salinity and detects microplastics in the ocean. The Mayflower is scheduled to make its Atlantic crossing in July 2021.

ProMare, a marine research organization, has been working with IBM Research and other scientific organizations to develop the AI Captain for the new generation of Mayflower. The AI Captain can make decisions without human supervision. The AI is powered by IBM edge computing systems, computer vision technology, and open-source software from Red Hat.

Over 50 sensors

Over 50 sensors have been installed on the Mayflower 400, a ship that first sailed across the ocean in 1620. The sensors are powered by IBM’s deep learning system and are used to identify hazards, hostile currents, and other conditions. The Mayflower uses onboard computers and an IBM Power Systems AC922 onshore to process data.

In addition to the sensors, the Mayflower uses an AI captain to navigate the ship. The AI has been trained with a million nautical images, which helps it recognize hazards and communicate with other ships. The AI captain also programs the Mayflower’s destination, considering ocean currents, weather conditions, and collision regulations.

Speed advantage

The Mayflower made a 3,125-mile ocean voyage in just 66 days. But the speed advantage wasn’t all about speed. A fast ship also made the journey in better condition than slower ships, which meant that it could carry perishable goods to markets more quickly. A similar advantage was also at play with the American ships.

Navigation in the ocean

IBM and marine research organization ProMare have worked together to develop the Mayflower 400, the world’s first intelligent ship. The 15-meter, the nine-ton trimaran is now preparing for a transatlantic voyage. The autonomous ship uses AI and solar energy to navigate the ocean. The vessel can steer itself without a human crew using its robotic rudder. The ship’s solar panels also provide power, supplementing its battery-powered operation.

Originally designed to replicate the 1620 landing in Plymouth, Mass., the MAS 400 has had to turn around twice. The original sailing had problems with its sails, which led it to return to Plymouth, England, in 2021. The mechanical problems were similar to the ones the Mayflower had in 1620. The Speedwell, the ship the Pilgrims sailed in, also suffered leaks and a faulty mechanical system.

Pilgrims’ journey

The Mayflower was a sailing ship with 102 passengers and 30 crew members from England to America in the winter of 1620. The passengers and crew were diverse; many Separatists wanted to live free from the Church of England. Others were simply seeking a better life for their families.

Today’s ships are faster and more stable than the Mayflower. The Mayflower, for example, had an average speed of two miles per hour, but the modern MAS 400 reaches ten miles per hour. The Mayflower was also 100 feet long, so it needed to be made of heavier material.