Fire Fighting Systems for Autonomous Vessels

Glockling, James and Savage, Ian (2023) Fire Fighting Systems for Autonomous Vessels. In: EAAW 2023, 28-29 November 2023, SS Great Britain, Bristol.

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This paper considers the nuances of fire protection requirements and functional solutions for the new generation of Naval Autonomous Surface Vessels (NASV). Their likely value, financial, to mission, and engineering knowledge, will drive a need for them to be resilient to internal and external fire challenges and this paper describes how data integration from disparate systems can be used to make-up the shortfall in situational awareness that the uncrewed situation creates. The application of novel sensors to the marine environment that provide immense data capital from minimal devices is proposed as part of the solution together with consideration of technologies hitherto neglected because of their incompatibility with personnel exposure. Whilst presenting challenges, the NASV environment also creates many opportunities for efficiencies, cost savings, and improvement in performance of fire management systems. The ideal fire and damage control systems will act pre-emptively to avoid fire, supporting the platform to be resilient in its delivery of mission, and once defeated play its role in limiting damage enabling it to return for recovery.

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