Yara Birkeland autonomous and zero emission vessel test model design demonstrated

A six metre long model of the final design of the autonomous and zero emission container vessel “Yara Birkeland” was launched in SINTEF Ocean’s sea laboratory in Trondheim, Norway, on 28 September.

In May, Yara announced the partnership with technology company Kongsberg to build the world’s first electric container ship.

The vessel will be built and put to use late 2018, as part of Yara International’s logistics value chain at the plant in Porsgrunn, Norway. The project is a collaboration between Yara and KongsbergGruppen, a Norwegian technology company.

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ABS set to join Unmanned Cargo Ship Development Alliance to advance autonomous shipping

ABS to join Unmanned Cargo Ship Development Alliance. Image credit Rolls-Royce.

ABS to join Unmanned Cargo Ship Development Alliance. Image credit Rolls-Royce.

ABS has confirmed that it plans to join the Unmanned Cargo Ship Development Alliance to work with industry partners, including class organisations, shipyards, equipment manufacturers, surveyors, designers and others to contribute to the advancement of autonomous shipping.

The design will integrate features of independent decision-making, autonomous navigation, environmental perception and remote control.

As ABS Greater China Division President Eric Kleess explains, the increasing connectivity and advanced technologies are changing the way the shipping industry operates:
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Autonomous Ships: Are regulations being left in their wake?

Michael F. Merlie is a partner at the law firm Gawthrop Greenwood, PC

Michael F. Merlie is a partner at the law firm Gawthrop Greenwood, PC

The general public is well aware of the continuing development of autonomous vehicles. The media constantly provides stories on the advances of these self-driving cars, trucks and cabs. Autonomous vehicles are expected to increase safety while also resulting in significant cost savings in the transportation of goods.

While not receiving the same amount of media coverage, the technology for autonomous ships is also rapidly developing. Earlier this year, a Norwegian partnership announced plans to build the world’s first fully-autonomous containership. The goal is for manned voyages to begin in 2018, with unmanned voyages to begin in 2020.

Rolls Royce has been a leader regarding the technology developments for autonomous vessels. Earlier this year, it announced its collaboration with a Finnish ferry company in developing an intelligent awareness system for vessels. Rolls Royce expects to have the Continue reading

Rolls Royce announces its plans to open a remote control shore based centre for autonomous ships in Finland

Photo courtesy of Rolls Royce

Photo courtesy of Rolls Royce

Rolls-Royce has announced the latest stage in its research and development plans to make remote and autonomous shipping a reality and reap the benefits of increasing digitalisation in the marine industry. The company says it is looking to develop partnerships and opportunities with other organisations around the world to create the capability, competencies and jobs to supply the technology and components required.

Today, the latest part of that programme has been confirmed with the announcement, in Finland, of a significant research grant by Tekes – the Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation. The funding will enable Rolls-Royce to invest further in a research and development centre in Turku, Finland. The company plans to carry out further development projects there focused on the future development of land-based control centres, and the use of artificial intelligence in future remote and autonomous shipping operations.

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Harbour tugs are likely to be the first class of vessels to become autonomous

According to one industry expert, trends are pointing towards harbour tugs being among the first vessel classes to become autonomous

According to one industry expert, trends are pointing towards harbour tugs being among the first vessel classes to become autonomous

According to Mike Ford, VP, Commercial Operations, at Wärtsilä Dynamic Positioning, trends are pointing towards harbour tugs being among the first vessel classes to become autonomous.

Mr Ford made the comments at the European Dynamic Positioning Conference in London, citing improvements in safety and lower operating costs through less crew as the reason harbour and terminals are likely to focus on developing autonomous tugs first.

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