• 2017 September 12 14:51

    Rolls-Royce reveals plans for autonomous Naval vessel

    Rolls-Royce has revealed plans for an autonomous, single role, naval vessel with a range of 3500 nautical miles, the company said in its press release.

    The vessel concept is capable of operating beyond the horizon for over 100 days, will displace 700 tonnes and reach speeds above 25 knots. The 60m long vessel is designed to perform a range of single role missions, for example, patrol & surveillance, mine detection or fleet screening.

    At the heart of the vessel is a robust and reliable power dense propulsion system. This combines Rolls-Royce’s proven expertise in both gas turbines and diesels with a demonstrable track record in electric propulsion, energy storage and propulsors.

    According to Benjamin Thorp, Rolls-Royce, General Manager Naval Electrics, Automation and Control, “Rolls-Royce is seeing interest from major navies in autonomous, rather than remote controlled, ships. Such ships offer a way to deliver increased operational capability, reduce the risk to crew and cut both operating and build costs.

    “Over the next 10 years or so, Rolls-Royce expects to see the introduction of medium sized unmanned platforms, particularly in leading navies, as the concept of mixed manned and unmanned fleets develops. With our experience and capabilities we expect to lead the field.”

    Larger manned ships will cover multi-role missions. Allowing fleet composition to be mixed in this way, navies will reap the operational and cost benefits offered by autonomous technology.

    The initial design features a full electric propulsion system which requires fewer auxiliary systems (lubrication, cooling system etc.) and offers better reliability levels than mechanical counterparts. It features two Rolls-Royce MTU 4000 Series gensets providing around 4MW electrical power to a 1.5MW propulsion drive. An alternative to diesel engines could be small gas turbines, further improving the system’s reliability and reducing onboard maintenance. Permanent Magnet Azipull thrusters together with a bow mounted tunnel thruster will make the vessel highly manoeuvrable. To reduce fuel consumption and extend operational range an additional 3000 kWh of energy storage will facilitate efficient low speed loiter operations and the vessel will also be fitted with photovoltaic solar panels to generate power when the vessel is on standby.

    The absence of crew increases the need for very reliable power and propulsion systems. Rolls-Royce’s approach is to blend advanced Intelligent Asset Management and system redundancy in a cost effective manner that avoids sacrificing the cost and volume savings achieved by removing the crew. A suite of autonomous support tools, developed by Rolls-Royce, such as Energy Management, Equipment Health Monitoring and predictive and remote maintenance, will ensure the availability of unmanned vessels.

    Many of the technologies needed to make autonomous ships a reality already exist. Rolls-Royce has created what it believes to be the world’s first Intelligent Awareness System combining multiple sensors with Artificial Intelligence, to help commercial vessels operate more safely and efficiently. Significant analysis of potential cyber risks is also being undertaken to ensure end-to-end security.

    Autonomous technology presents an opportunity to automate certain parts of the ship’s operations and the partial removal of sailors reduces operating costs and improves safety by limiting the number of people exposed to hazards.




2018 June 17

18:40 Port of Oakland's largest terminal operator OK new lease to 2027
18:38 GoodBulk Ltd. announces delivery of Capesize vessel
18:32 Navios Maritime Partners announces sale of containership and options to sell four additional containerships

2018 June 15

18:35 Hapag-Lloyd implements Peak Season Surcharge from Mediterranean to USA
18:05 Wallenius Wilhelmsen Ocean adds Adelaide on the Australia service
17:54 Throughput of port Kaliningrad in 5M’18 up 12% Y-o-Y to 6.05 million tonnes
17:35 GTT conducts two FEED studies on two types of Gravity Based System
17:20 Throughput of port Vyborg in 5M’18 up 22% Y-o-Y to 610,900 tonnes
17:05 Port of Koper officially part of the New Silk Road
16:40 Yantar Shipyard launches yet another trawler of Project SK-3101R
16:35 Port of Long Beach volume up to 687,427 TEU in May 2018
16:05 Royal IHC joins PortXL
15:45 Throughput of port Vysotsk in 5M’18 declined by 3% Y-o-Y to 7.49 million tonnes
15:22 Main phase of Nizhegorodsky hydrosystem project obtains state expert approval
15:21 VTG FastTrack makes ad hoc transportation from the Port of Hamburg possible
15:00 Vopak opens new rail infrastructure in the port of Antwerp
14:21 Royal IHC and IHC IQIP sign memorandum of agreement with SOIC
14:09 DNV GL issues first type approval for aluminium cables onboard ships
13:16 Throughput of port Primorsk in 5M’18 down 18% Y-o-Y to 22.63 million tonnes
12:48 Bunker prices are down at the Port of Saint-Petersburg, Russia (graph)
12:27 Innovative solution for lowering of ship emissions tested in the port of Rotterdam
12:23 LUKOIL commissions third well at Filanovsky field second stage
11:59 Throughput of port Ust-Luga in 5M’18 down 1% to 41.48 million tonnes
11:31 Throughput of Big Port St. Petersburg up 16% to 24.73 million tonnes in 5M’18
11:02 Lloyd’s Register and TWI launch Fullagar Technologies
10:30 Kotug Smit Towage performs naming ceremony for Damen tugs Rotterdam & Beagle
10:24 Brent Crude futures price down 0.14% to $75.83, Light Sweet Crude – down 0.09% to $66.83
10:02 Seaports of Ukraine handled 54.3 million tonnes of cargo in 5M’18, down 2.1% Y-o-Y
09:40 Throughput of Russian seaports in 5M’18 grew by 2.7% Y-o-Y to 328.4 million tonnes (detalization)
09:19 Baltic Dry Index up to 1,433 points

2018 June 14

18:03 CMA CGM announces FAK rates from East Mediterranean ports to Gulf and Red Sea
17:47 Throughput of port Kavkaz in 5M’18 up 37% Y-o-Y to 15.34 million tonnes
17:33 APL unveils new China Southeast Asia Service 8
17:30 Specifications of products to be rated as manufactured in Russia will be updated
17:03 Pasha Hawaii receives new refrigerated containers as part of container replenishment program
16:48 State Duma approves federal law on setting rouble prices for services offered in Russian seaports (document)
16:33 Long Beach Harbor Commissioners adopt port budget
16:16 Rosmorport announces tender for dredging works in water area of port Vanino
16:03 Prosafe extends standstill agreement with Cosco
15:50 Vyborg Shipyard to deliver two 22 MW icebreakers of Project IBSV01 by November’18
15:32 Huisman and RAMLAB start project for the production of 3D large offshore crane hook
15:19 FESCO fleet began supplying of goods to northern Russia
15:02 HMM, Evergreen and APL launch China-Australia express service
14:32 Keppel delivers second rig to Borr Drilling
14:20 Commercial Sea Port of Ust-Luga accepted and handled a Panamax ship
14:02 MOL's newbuilding coal carrier OI MARU to serve JERA Trading
13:47 Global fuel market is waiting for some clarity from the Vienna meeting next week, expert says
13:46 Three nuclear-powered icebreakers of Project 22220 will be delivered by 2021 – USC
13:32 DFDS orders additional freight ferry newbuilding from Jinling Shipyard
13:02 TechnipFMC and DOF Subsea announce the delivery of Skandi Recife and commencement of contract with Petrobras
12:44 WMU joins in Malmö coastline clean-up for World Oceans Day 2018
12:25 APM Terminals offers new gateway to Iraq
11:43 Extensive geotechnical investigation of the Port of Riga territory commenced in Spilve meadows
11:19 Bunker prices is growing at the Far East ports of Russia (graph)
10:21 Brent Crude futures price down 0.31% to $76.5, Light Sweet Crude – down 0.09% to $66.58
10:00 Baltic Workboats is renewing the Danish pilot boat fleet
09:38 Major amphibious ship Ivan Gren to join Russian Navy before late June 2018
09:17 Baltic Dry Index up to 1,404 points

2018 June 13

18:35 ESPO congratulates Port of Dunkerque for obtaining EcoPorts’ environmental standard (PERS)
18:05 CMA CGM announces FAK rates from Asia to North Europe