Automated Ships Ltd

    42 Sisnal Park Road

    Estover, Plymouth

    Devon UK PL6 7FH

    +44 (0)7455203964 

    info@automatedshipsltd.com

    Automated Ships Ltd and KONGSBERG to build first unmanned and fully-automated vessel for offshore operations!

     

    Kongsberg, Norway, 1stth November 2016 – The UK’s Automated Ships Ltd and Norway’s Kongsberg Maritime have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to build the world’s first unmanned and fully-automated vessel for offshore operations. In January 2017, Automated Ships Ltd will contract the ‘Hrönn’, which will be designed and built in Norway in cooperation with KONGSBERG. Sea trials will take place in Norway’s newly designated automated vessel test bed in the Trondheim fjord and will be conducted under the auspices of DNV GL and the Norwegian Maritime Authority. The Hrönn will ultimately be classed and flagged, respectively.

    • First full size unmanned ship to be built through UK and Norwegian co-operation
    • Offshore vessel ‘Hrönn’, to begins construction in January 2017 and enters operation in 2018

    KONGSBERG will deliver all major marine equipment necessary for the design, construction and operation of Hrönn. The leading global maritime technology manufacturer will deliver all systems for dynamic positioning and navigation, satellite and position reference, marine automation and communication. All vessel control systems including K-Pos dynamic positioning, K-Chief automation and K-Bridge ECDIS will be replicated at an Onshore Control Centre, allowing full remote operations of the Hrönn.

     

    “We are proud and excited to be part of the first project to actually realise the potential of unmanned vessels by supporting the construction of the first full size, fully operational example,” added Stene Førsund, EVP Global Sales & Marketing, Kongsberg Maritime. “The Hrönn is an incredible ship and a great example of KONGSBERG’s commitment to developing autonomous and unmanned vessels. We are involved in several major projects in this field including AUTOSEA, which focuses on integrated sensor technology and fusion, and automated collision avoidance systems. KONGSBERG is also a key stakeholder in the world’s first official autonomous vehicles test bed, which opened this September in the Trondheimsfjord.”

    About the Ship:

    Hrönn is a light-duty, offshore utility ship servicing the offshore energy, scientific/hydrographic and offshore fish-farming industries. Its intended uses include but are not limited to: Survey, ROV (Remotely Operated Vehicle) and AUV (Autonomous Underwater Vehicle) Launch & Recovery, light intermodal cargo delivery and delivery to offshore installations, and open-water fish farm support. The vessel can also be utilised as a standby vessel, able to provide firefighting support to an offshore platform working in cooperation with manned vessels. Automated Ships Ltd is currently in discussion with several end-users that will act as early-adopters and to establish a base-rate for operations and secure contracts for Hrönn offshore.

     

    Hrönn will initially operate and function primarily as a remotely piloted ship, in Man-in-the-Loop Control mode, but will transition to fully automated, and ultimately autonomous operations as the control algorithms are developed concurrently during remotely piloted operations.

     

    Currently, only small unmanned boats are being utilised for near shore operations but there are no technical limitations to constructing large, unmanned and automated systems. The only impediments are regulatory, but with the participation of DNV GL and the NMA, and Norwegian and UK companies and institutions, it will be possible to rapidly and at low-cost be the first to market with a full-size unmanned ship.

     

    “The advantages of unmanned ships are manifold, but primarily centre on the safe guarding of life and reduction in the cost of production and operations; removing people from the hazardous environment of at-sea operations and re-employing them on-shore to monitor and operate robotic vessels remotely, along with the significantly decreased cost in constructing ships, will revolutionise the marine industry. Automated Ships Ltd will be at the forefront of that revolution, along with its many Norwegian partners,” said Managing Director Brett A. Phaneuf of Automated Ships Ltd.

    Partners:

    Det Norske Vertias - Our classification & technical assurance, independent accreditation partner

    Fjellstrand - Our shipbuilder

    For further information, please contact:

    Gunvor Hatling Midtbø

    Kongsberg Maritime

    Tel: +47 9921 4209

    gunvor.hatling.midtbo@km.kongsberg.com

     

    Brett A. Phaneuf

    Automated Ships Ltd

    Tel: +44 (0)7490296916

    info@automatedshipsltd.com