Products (Electronics - Electronic Equipment)
Furuno Electric: Fish Finder
History of Furuno Electric
Furuno Electric Co., Ltd. is a manufacturer of electronic equipment, mainly focused on marine applications. In 1938, Furuno Electric started its business as an electronics shop. A major turning point came in 1948 when the company succeeded in commercializing the world’s first practical fish finder. The fact that a small private electronics shop was the first to develop such a cutting-edge product has become known as a legendary accomplishment. Furuno Electric, which started to sell fish finders in the same year, has been rapidly expanding its business since then.
Subsequently, Furuno Electric has developed and distributed many marine electronics products such as shipboard radar, net sondes, and net recorders, establishing a strong position as a marine electronics equipment manufacturer. In addition, Furuno Electric recognized the importance of business diversification early on, and launched a land business in 1966 to initiate broader product development not limited to the marine sector. The company’s new product lines include facsimiles, Omega receivers, autopilot systems, satellite navigation equipment, and simple radiotelephones.
Furuno Electric has been aggressively expanding its overseas business since 1978, when the company opened a subsidiary company in the United States.
Furuno Electric has succeeded in the transition from a small private shop into a world-leading diversified and globalized enterprise. Here, the latest model of fish finders, a landmark product for the company, is showcased.
BBDS1: Bottom discrimination fish finder
The BBDS1,Furuno Electric’s latest fish finder product, features a bottom discrimination function system that was developed in an industry–academia collaboration with the University of Tokyo.
This bottom discrimination function system can precisely determine the sea-bottom environment such as surface irregularities and the type of sea-bottom soil. In addition, this system can classify the soil (depths between 5–100 m) into the four types of materials: rock, gravel, sand, and mud, and the identified materials can be graphically displayed in color on an onboard monitor by using NavNet 3D (Furuno Electric’s onboard three-dimensional navigation system).
The BBDS1 is useful in selecting the best fishing points according to fish habitats by precisely knowing underwater conditions such as variations in sea-bottom materials, the size of fish, and sea depths.
Future of Furuno Electric
In addition to fish finders, Furuno Electric currently manufactures and distributes a variety of marine products such as sonar, tidal current meters, radar, and wireless equipment. Furuno Electric is also seeking to diversify its business into other sectors including products related to automotive electronic toll collection systems and medical devices. Further growth of Furuno Electric’s wider business is expected in the future.
Aug 12, 2011
About the author
Eriko Kinashi is a reporter for Japanest NIPPON