Autonomous shipping roadmap unveiled by Norway and Singapore

A new Roadmap for Smart and Autonomous Sea Transport Systems has been unveiled following a joint development effort between maritime research institutes in Norway and Singapore, backed by the countries’ respective governments.

The new document was unveiled at the SMI Forum in Singapore by Singapore’s Senior Minister of State for Transport and Foreign Affairs, Chee Hong Tat, and the Ambassador of Norway to Singapore, Anita Nergaard.

Development was carried out by Technology Centre for Offshore and Marine, Singapore (TCOMS), and SINTEF Ocean in Norway, with input from Singapore’s Maritime and Port Authority (MPA) and Singapore Maritime Institute (SMI), as well as the Research Council of Norway (RCN).

The roadmap is a product of an MoU signed between SINTEF Ocean and TCOMS in June 2019, and investigates the impacts of Industry 4.0 on the shipping sector in relation to the introduction of smarter ships and ports, digital data exchange, automated processes, autonomous ships, and advanced robotics.

“International collaboration is essential to further develop, and to successfully implement, smart and autonomous systems, and we are pleased to establish a committed collaboration with TCOMS in Singapore in this area,” said Dr. Vegar Johansen, president of SINTEF Ocean.

The research partners hope that their work on this project will act as a springboard to support the creation of an open and international innovation ecosystem supporting new business models and new market opportunities.

Priority research areas for the institutes include smart ship interaction, digital interoperability and smart ports, with international standards seen as a key element in making progress in these areas.

“Smart and autonomous vessels will be a step-change for the maritime industry, but widespread deployment requires international standardisation and agreements,” said Ørnulf Rødseth, Senior Scientist at SINTEF Ocean and secretary of the International Network for Autonomous Ships.

The full roadmap can be downloaded here.

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