Mayflower 400 - World’s First Artificial Intelligence Ship

The Mayflower 400 is the world’s first artificial intelligence managed vessel to sail on a transatlantic voyage. It will track aquatic mammals, analyze plastic in the water, and study marine pollution. 

The voyage started on May 15, 2021, and the vessel is powered by Artificial Intelligence and the Sun’s energy via solar panel. The voyage was scheduled to start in 2020, to mark the 400th anniversary of the sailing of the original Mayflower, which took settlers from England to North America.

In this article, we shall discuss the key features of the Mayflower 400 and the significance of the transatlantic voyage. IAS Exam aspirants must refer to the details mentioned further below as questions based on the same might be asked in the upcoming Civil Services Exam. 

Mayflower 400 – AI Vessel [UPSC Notes]: Download PDF Here

About Mayflower 400 

The Mayflower Autonomous Ship (MAS) is a highly innovative project to design, build and sail the world’s first full-sized, fully autonomous unmanned ship across the Atlantic Ocean. 



Given below are the key aspects of the Mayflower 400:

  • It is a completely autonomous ship and is built by ProMare, which is a marine research organization in partnership with IBM
  • The ship is 15 m-long trimaran, which weighs nine tons
  • The ship has been built by ProMare, which invested $1 million. Apart from this, the other funding was done through with global contributions in form of technology from India, the United States, and Switzerland to build the ship
  •  There are six high-tech cameras installed on the ship, that have been trained with audio data to avoid collisions
  • It is capable of self-activating a hydrophone that can listen to whales and is capable of handling waves that are fifty metres high 
  • The ship has been equipped with a smart captain, an artificial intelligence technology

UPSC aspirants can visit the linked article and know about the International Maritime Organization (IMO), a United Nations specialized agency that regulates shipping and matters related to shipping

Objective of Mayflower 400

More than 80% of the underwater is yet to be explored, Mayflower 400 will be able to study marine pollution and analyze plastics in the water.

Learn about the Marine Mineral Resources and their importance at the linked article. 

UPSC 2022

Significance of the Unmanned Artificial Vessel

  • Since the ship is unmanned, scientists and researchers can have a better experience of exploring the underwater world and the rough seas as there is no risk to human life
  • It is constructed in a manner that it has been taught to avoid collisions and can correct itself
  • With the help of cameras and radars installed, the population distribution of marine animals in the ocean can be studied
  • Powered by Artificial Intelligence and the energy from the sun, the Mayflower Autonomous Ship will be able to spend vast periods of time at sea, collecting data about the ocean

Also, refer to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) for UPSC exam preparation. 

Mayflower 400 – AI Vessel [UPSC Notes]:-Download PDF Here

Candidates preparing for administrative exams can refer to the updated UPSC Syllabus for the prelims and mains examination at the linked article and accordingly start their preparation.

Visit BYJU’S for the latest exam updates, study material and preparation tips. 

Frequently Asked Questions on Mayflower 400

Q 1. What is the significance of Mayflower 400?

Ans. The Mayflower 400 is the world’s first artificial intelligence managed vessel to sail on a transatlantic voyage. The ship is a 15 m-long trimaran, which weighs nine tons. Since it is unmanned, it will be able to explore the complex underwater areas through the rough seas where men cannot reach easily.

Q 2. Who created Mayflower 400?

Ans. ProMare, a marine research organization in partnership with IBM built Mayflower 400.

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