The Mayflower Autonomous Ship Project

Mayflower Autonomous Ship 2022 Transatlantic Crossing Attempt Now Underway


- AI-powered crewless vessel begins journey from Plymouth UK to United States-


New York, NY, April 29, 2022 –The Mayflower Autonomous Ship (MAS400) is now in international waters as it attempts to cross the Atlantic ocean and reach the United States, ocean research non-profit ProMare and IBM (NYSE: IBM) announced today.

Following daily briefings led by IBM’s The Weather Company, the ship departed from Turnchapel Wharf, Plymouth, U.K. at 5:30 a.m. BST on 27, April 2022. Footage of the departure is available here.

With no human captain or onboard crew, the research vessel uses IBM’s automation, AI and edge computing technologies to assess its status, environment and mission and make decisions about what to do next while at sea. People from all over the world can follow the ship’s progress via the mission dashboard here which includes live video provided by Videosoft, maps and data streaming.

The journey across the Atlantic Ocean is expected to take approximately three weeks. If successful, the ship is expected to land in Virginia, then make its way to Washington, D.C.

The project is the result of years of work and a global collaboration between marine research non-profit ProMare, IBM and dozens of partners from across industry and academia. Designed to forge a cost-effective and flexible platform for gathering data about the ocean, MAS400 will help scientists gather the data they need to advance understanding of key global issues affecting ocean health including ocean acidification, and marine mammal conservation. The science projects on board are spearheaded by IBM, Promare, MarineAI and four universities. One of the pieces of scientific equipment on MAS is Hypertaste – an ‘electronic tongue’ developed by IBM Research.

The project aims to aid the development of fully autonomous AI systems and applications for use in a variety of industries such as shipping, oil and gas, telecommunications, security and defence, fishing and aquaculture.

The pioneering mission is the second attempt at a transatlantic crossing. The first attempt, in June 2021, was halted following a mechanical issue with the hybrid propulsion system.

MAS Facts:


Mayflower Autonomous Ship (MAS)

Organizations and
companies behind it:    

ProMare, IBM and a global consortium of partners



Help safeguard the future of the ocean

Humans onboard:


Autonomy level

5 (can operate independently with no human intervention)

Sensors onboard:


AI Cameras onboard:    


Digital octopuses onboard:


Science projects:

Marine mammals, micro plastics, ocean chemistry, sea level height & wave patterns





Max speed:

10 knots


5 tons/4535 Kg

Scientific equipment capacity:

0.9 tons/1000 Kg

Hull design:

Trimaran (central hull with two outrigger wings)


Solar-driven hybrid electric motor


IBM Maximo Visual Inspection, IBM Edge Application Manager, IBM Operational Decision Manager automation software, data from IBM’s The Weather Company         


IBM Power Systems AC922 (onshore), 6 Jetson AGX Xavier, 2 Jetson Xavier NX, 4+ Intel-based computers, 4+ custom microprocessor systems

Navigation equipment:

Precision GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System), IMU (Inertial Measurement Units), radar, weather station, SATCOM, AIS


Media Resources:

Webcam dashboard:

Live mission portal:

Mayflower Autonomous Ship Experience

More information:



Social film



About the Mayflower Autonomous Ship

With no human captain or onboard crew, the Mayflower Autonomous Ship (MAS) uses AI and the energy from the sun to travel further and reveal more about the ocean. Working in tandem with scientists and, in the future, other autonomous vessels, MAS provides a flexible and cost-effective platform for deepening understanding of critical issues such as climate change and marine mammal conservation. The Mayflower Autonomous Ship project is led by marine research organization ProMare with IBM serving as both lead technology partner and lead scientific partner for the project. Other partners are listed here.

Media Contacts:

Ayse Phaneuf
President, ProMare

Blair Riley
Weber Shandwick for IBM