Mayflower unmanned research trimaran hits the water

NAVAL ARCHITECTURE WEEK

Following two years of design, construction, and training of its AI models, the new fully-autonomous trimaran vessel Mayflower was lifted into the waters off the coast of Plymouth, England, on Tuesday, September 15.

The trimaran eatures an AI built by ProMare and IBM developers with the ability to sense, think, and make decisions at sea with no human captain or onboard crew.

Mayflower is designed to work in tandem with scientists and other autonomous vessels to help researchers gather ocean data to understand critical issues such as global warming, micro-plastic pollution, and marine mammal conservation.

The vessel will spend the next six months in sea trials and undertake various research missions and voyages before attempting to cross the Atlantic in Spring 2021. The transatlantic voyage will be based on a similar route to that of the famed sailing ship Mayflower, which made the same crossing 400 years ago.

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