VARD is creating eight Marine Robotic Vessels to boost Ocean Infinity's operations worldwide
“The impact and the scale of this robotic fleet will spark the biggest transformation the maritime industry has seen since sail gave way to steam. With our new fleet we will be able to provide sustainable services to all corners of the industry from offshore energy, to logistics and transport” says Oliver Plunkett, CEO of Ocean Infinity.
23. November 2020
The vessels will be the first of their kind and represent a giant leap forward for the maritime industry.
In partnership with Ocean Infinity, VARD has designed a unique multi-purpose platform that allows for onshore remote control, light crewed or uncrewed operations, and the introduction of alternative fuels such as green ammonia. The vessels will be the first of their kind and represent a giant leap forward for the maritime industry. VARD, one of the major global designers and shipbuilders of specialized vessels, has secured a new contract for the design and construction of eight such Marine Robotic Vessels for Ocean Infinity.
The series of eight vessels will expand Ocean Infinity’s new Armada fleet. The fleet demonstrates the latest in marine robotics, including autonomous underwater vehicles and remotely operated surface vessels. The new vessels by VARD will serve as multi- role-vessels and will support Ocean Infinity’s operations worldwide from its control centers.
Design and engineering are currently ongoing at Vard Design, and development of onboard control systems at Vard Electro in Ålesund, Norway.
“We are excited to be chosen as Ocean Infinity’s partner in this project. Together we are developing and building vessels prepared for the future, which is exactly what we want to be doing,” says Alberto Maestrini, CEO in VARD.
Unique ship design and technology
The VARD 9 60 design is developed together with Ocean Infinity. This is a customer who is committed to, and has high ambitions, for low environmental impact. Working closely with regulatory bodies, VARD has designed the vessels for an ultra-low carbon footprint and they are among the first vessels to be prepared for green ammonia and fuel cell and battery technology. In addition, the vessels will provide safe launch and recovery platforms for ROVs and other robotic systems through two large moonpools arranged with VARD’s own damping system.
“Our energy efficiency ambitions have guided the design process. The results are vessels with hull forms, propellers, and engine arrangements finely tuned to work together to achieve just that. The vessels are also developed for safe and secure prolonged missions, with features like split engine and propulsion rooms, redundant cooling systems, sensor systems, automation and power management systems, navigation and communication systems, to make sure crew and property are kept safe,“ says Ove Bjørneset, VP Research and Innovation in VARD.
Vard Electro has continued development of its well-proven SeaQ Integrated Automation System and SeaQ Power Management System together with the class society, to allow for safe remote operations and cyber-secure communication. Vard Electro brings its considerable systems integrator experience to the table and will deliver a complete electrical systems package, from engineering through installation, integration, and commissioning.
All the eight vessels will be built at VARD’s shipyard Vard Vung Tau in Vietnam, scheduled for deliveries in the period from mid-2022 to end-2023.