'RoboRat' Takes to the Water for 'Intelligent' Autopilot Test

May 26, 2021

Yachting Journal

The new Robosys Test Vessel ‘RoboRat’ built by Ring Powercraft, Itchenor, UK. Photo courtesy Robosys

Robosys Automation, developers of Voyager autonomous navigation systems, built in close collaboration with Ring Powercraft, Ambex Marine and DTC, Domo Tactical Communications have put the 'RoboRat' on trial in the Solent area, a trial showcasing Robosys’ latest intelligent autopilot software for commercial and recreational vessels and demonstrations for a multitude of applications are being scheduled throughout the summer. 

The ‘RoboRat’, designed for inshore reconnaissance/ survey, is the smallest offering from the new Ring Powercraft range of Unmanned Surface Vessels custom designed in collaboration with Robosys.  Fitted with Simrad navigational equipment and specialist electronics by Ambex Marine Ltd of Lancing, she has a powerful encrypted RF communications link provided by Domo Tactical Communications at Whiteley which allows remote piloting or live data streaming for analysis and evaluation.

The Voyager software takes information from the onboard chart system, radar, AIS and imagery to plan and execute a safe route entirely in accordance with the collision regulations (COLREGS). It is designed to be calibrated to support any power-driven vessel from a supertanker to the 5m Roborat. 

The ‘RoboRat’ program is focused on optimizing the system in busy and confined waters on a small platform. Later this year, Robosys will be installing Voyager on two much larger ocean-going vessels for similar trials in a variety of environmental and operating conditions.