30-day remotely operated USV ordered by joint venture

USV AS, a joint venture company established by DeepOcean, Solstad Offshore and Østensjø, has contracted Astilleros Gondán shipyard to build a remotely controlled unmanned surface vessel (USV) capable of operating for up to 30 days without charging or refuelling.

The JV concept development for the USV began in 2018 and has been conducted in collaboration with technology providers and relevant authorities. Maritime Robotics will deliver the system that enables auto remote control and navigation for the USV.

The USV is 24 metres long and 7.5 metres wide. A hybrid diesel-electric propulsion system, which includes a battery package from Seam, will allow the unmanned vessel to operate offshore for up to 30 days without charging or refuelling. It will be equipped with a work ROV that is capable of operating down to 1,500 metres water depth.

The USV will be remotely controlled from shore but will have a range of autonomous features. During operations, both the USV vessel crew and ROV operators will be co-located in the same remote operating centre.

“With our new USV, we are moving the captain onshore who will still remain in control over the offshore operations. We will operate the vessel and the ROV from an onshore remote operations centre. This is an excellent way of reducing cost, CO2 footprint and limit personnel exposure to offshore operations,” said Øyvind Mikaelsen, Chair of USV AS and CEO of DeepOcean.

Delivery of the USV is expected by the end of 2024, and it is planned to be ready for operations in 2025 following offshore testing.

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Rob O'Dwyer

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