The UK Ship Register has signed its first-ever unmanned vessel to the flag.
As explained, the move shows how the register “is adapting to the changes of the maritime industry.”
ASV’s C-Worker 7 will be used for work such as subsea positioning, surveying and environmental monitoring. It can be used under direct control, semi-manned or completely unmanned.
Although such autonomous vessels are now being introduced to many fleets in both commercial and military sectors across the world, they are still relatively new in the maritime sector, according to the UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA).
“By supporting emerging technologies such as autonomous systems, we are helping to keep the UK at the forefront of the global maritime industry,” Doug Barrow, Director UK Ship Register, said.
“The UK Flag is growing, as we have invested in resources to meet the demands of that growth. We have the support of the UK Government, and the wider UK maritime industries to continue our expansion,” Barrow added.
“We are delighted to have achieved the first registration of a semi-autonomous vessel for maritime operations. The MCA has been critical in enabling ASV to reach this pivotal milestone recognising the prominence of unmanned systems in the maritime environment,” Vince Dobbin, Sales and Marketing Director of ASV Global, said.