Grovfjord Mek. Verksted wins contract to build robot ships for Ocean Infinity

Grovfjord Mek. Verksted wins contract to build robot ships for Ocean Infinity

Norwegian manufacturer Grovfjord Mek. Verksted (GMV) will build an Armada of large, cutting-edge robot ships for Ocean Infinity, the marine robotics company. The fleet of ultra low emission marine robots will be deployed from shorelines across the globe.

Ocean Infinity appointed GMV to build its initial fleet of up to 13 vessels capable of wholly robotic operations. Each robot ship can be equipped with ROVs and AUVs, as well as a variety of other sensors or equipment, and will be remotely controlled from one of 3 global control centres in Austin, Texas, Southampton in England and a location in Asia still to be determined.

GMV is Norway’s largest manufacturer of aluminium work boats and is located in Grovfjord in Sør-Troms. GMV carries out all of the design work itself in close collaboration with itscustomers. The manufacturer has a large electrical department with high expertise in battery technology and develops its own control systems.

GMV has already started the construction of Ocean Infinity’s first 4 21m autonomous vessels. The robots which are designed to be transported worldwide by airplanes have been specifically designed to include highly efficient propellers, engines, and batteries, to reduce the CO2 emissions during the operation.

The company is near completion of the design work on 36m autonomous vessels, with the same advanced vessel technology as the 21m vessel, but with increased payload capability.

Dan Hook, Ocean Infinity, managing director, said: “We are ahead of the rest of the world in terms of our commitments and ambitions for delivering low environmental impact maritime services. We spent a long time deciding who to select to build these first of a kind vessels for our Armada fleet and are incredibly excited about working with the team at GMV who bring many years of experience building highly efficient vessels for operations in the harshest of conditions.”

“This contract is a fantastic opportunity for us,” said CEO Bård Meek-Hansen. “That a world-leading company like Ocean Infinity Group chooses to partner with us is a great honour and tells me that our focus on design and technology development in recent years has been right. We really look forward to cooperating with OIGL and the other main suppliers in the development and construction of these vessels.”

The vessels will be built according to DNV GL class and British flag. The first delivery is planned late this year, and the rest of the deliveries will take place in the period 2021-2023.