"Leading the transformation of shipping”: World’s first test site for autonomous ships.

Last Updated: 25/03/2022 07:59     Created at: 04/03/2022 11:33


Final Presentation of NAVISP Project EL3-005 now available:

On Monday, February 28, 2022, SINTEF presented the results of the NAVISP project “TRONDHEIMSFJORDEN TEST AREA.” About 50 people from industry, research, and NAVISP participating States Delegations followed the interesting presentation and the subsequent interactive Q&A session.

SINTEF is one of the most important European and, with 2000 employees, the largest Norwegian research institute. SINTEF was founded in 1950 as a centre of excellence for researchers at the Norwegian Technical University (NTNU) with a wide range of departments whose areas of expertise range from shipbuilding and aquaculture to satellite communications and medical device research.

The project's main objective was to develop infrastructures and methods for testing and verifying technologies and concepts related to autonomous shipping in order to ensure a high level of security and operability and increase confidence and trustworthiness in autonomous shipping.

As autonomous ships and operations require highly accurate, integrated, and robust position, navigation, and timing (PNT) information, the project covers a high demand for the future of the European shipping industry. To this end, in 2016, the Trondheimsfjorden Autonomous Vessel Test Area was established as the world's first autonomous vessel test area to enable the transition from traditional to autonomous shipping. This included the development and deployment of a DGNSS reference station, an AIS base station, a GNSS monitoring station, as well as mobile maritime broadband radio (MBR) units.

Thanks to NAVISP's support, SINTEF and its consortium partner Kongsberg Seatex succeeded in developing the world's first test area for autonomous ships. In doing so, SINTEF became a key player and facilitator in the development of autonomous ships by building, expanding, and strengthening the necessary infrastructures. The Test Area forms part of the infrastructure of the Ocean Space Center  being established in Trondheim with the aim to make Norway an international centre of gravity in ocean space technologies.

The project was part of NAVISP Element 3, which aims to support ESA member states' national navigation, positioning, and timing activities along the entire value chain to develop and promote products, applications, and services based on GNSS and, more broadly, PNT systems, that are coherent with national strategies.

More detailed information can be found in the slides of the Final Presentation