Abu Dhabi Ports to build unmanned tug fleet

(l-r) Capt. Maktoum Al Houqani, Abu Dhabi Ports, and Mike Fitzpatrick, Robert Allan Ltd, sign the agreement

Abu Dhabi Ports has announced a collaboration project with vessel designer Robert Allan Ltd to develop a fleet of fully unmanned autonomous commercial marine tugs to be operated by SAFEEN, Abu Dhabi Ports’ maritime service arm.

The remotely-controlled marine tugs will be fully unmanned and able to operate within a wide spectrum of autonomy, the partners said, having signed a Memorandum of Understanding to confirm the deal at an IMO gathering in London.

“This agreement marks a milestone in our digital transformation, and confirms our commitment to ensure the Emirate of Abu Dhabi strengthens its reputation as a leading centre for digital innovation regionally and globally,” said Falah Mohammad Al Ahbabi, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Ports.

“It’s a top priority for Abu Dhabi Ports to lead the charge towards digitalising the region’s maritime operations, and we are committed to providing a pioneering model for the sector. Adopting digital solutions and keeping up with the changing demands of global trade have proven to be key drivers for economic growth and are integral towards achieving our goal of being a smart port.”

“Developing solutions and building strategic partnerships with industry experts will help achieve a paradigm shift in maritime operations worldwide, and globally in line with the directives of the leadership.”

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Rob O'Dwyer

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