Technological development in the marine transport industry has traditionally focused on the engineering aspects of ships, such as design, structure, machinery and other hardware related to hulls, engines, cargo holds or tanks, as well as cargo handling equipment and so on. However, amid recent advances in data processing capacity, higher-capacity and faster communications, and the proliferation of inexpensive high-performance sensing devices, the digital transformation (DX) revolution has advanced broadly across society, and information technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT), big data, and AI are playing an increasingly important role in business. The time has come for the marine transport industry to take advantage of these technological advances.
As the entire logistics industry is poised to undergo major change with DX, we set our vision for technological innovation-"Lead the industry in the development of innovative technologies related to marine transport"-to keep us in the vanguard of the transformation.
Centered on the ISHIN NEXT-MOL SMART SHIP PROJECT, which began in 2016, we have developed a host of technologies under the concepts of ensuring safe operation and further reducing our environmental impact. In April 2022, we unveiled "One mile ahead" as our new technology slogan with the aim of enhancing technological evolution and encompassing not only "vessels," but also, in a broader sense, "the sea."
Under the "One mile ahead" banner, we are united in maximizing our efforts on technological development unique to MOL, which uses both underlying technologies from ship hardware and information technology, to achieve our vision.
The MOL Group established the Technology Innovation Unit in April 2018 to accelerate its efforts in technological development. The unit comprises three organizations: the Technical Division, which is in charge of managing and developing vessel engineering-related technologies; the Smart Shipping Division, which oversees marine-related ICT; and the Offshore Technical Division, which was created in October 2020 to reinforce technological development in the offshore business field. These three organizations work closely together to promote the development of next-generation technologies. Additionally, for each development project, the Technology Innovation Unit actively pursues inter-industry collaboration with outside parties, including other companies, organizations, and research institutions.
Examples of Technological Development through Co-Creation with External Institutions
MOL's Technology Research Center contributes to safe operation through scientific analysis of fuel and lubricants and develops new technology to ensure safer, more efficient, and more environment-friendly transport services, building upon the company's extensive transport technology and expertise.