This chapter on thruster controls and automation starts with an introduction to the fact that thrusters are a must to maintain the ship in position or moving at a desired speed. On getting the required output signal from the DP controller the thruster/s work and provide the required thrust. When the required level of thrust is attained, the thruster controls system generates a signal that the requested level of thrust has been attained. This concept is explained in the thrust command and feedback signals.

Also, it is important to understand by DP engineers and other DP professionals whether the thruster is ready for use on DP or not. This also is a matter of automation, which is conveyed by the thruster by a signal called the thruster “Ready” signal. Once all safety measures are in place and the thruster is running, this ready signal is generated and sent to the DP controller.