Autonomous vessel technology developer ASV Global has opened its new state of the art Mission Control Center at its headquarters in Portchester, U.K., forming a hub for the company’s ongoing development of its ASView autonomous vessel control system.
The new center, officially opened by Mark Garnier MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, is capable of operating and monitoring the company’s fleet of autonomous surface vehicles (ASV) all over the world using satellite communication links, and will also be used for operator training and simulation exercises.
The center has been partly funded under Innovate U.K. funding awarded to the company in 2015 under a project called ‘Unmanned Safe Maritime Operations Over The Horizon’ which tasked ASV Global’s team of autonomous system engineers to research and develop both the technology and the regulatory requirements of operating autonomous vessels over the horizon.
Technical Director Richard Daltry said, “As a result of this Innovate U.K. project and our portfolio of complimentary research and development programs, I am proud to say that we are now ready to start real world testing of our autonomous over the horizon control system. This new Mission Control Center will be instrumental in our continuing developments and will demonstrate our ability to achieve advanced, safe, autonomous operations at sea.”
International Trade Minister, Mark Garnier, said, “With world-renowned research institutions and leading innovative businesses the UK’s south coast really is a leading marine and maritime hub. ASV Global is at the heart of this. Their pioneering autonomous vessel technology showcases the very best of U.K. expertise. They already export to 10 countries demonstrating their leadership in this sector. A strong example of a successful U.K. exporter, I want more companies to follow their example and seize the global demand for U.K. goods and services.”
In September 2016, ASV Global signed a licensing agreement with The Ministry of Defense allowing for the use of the Advanced Unmanned Surface Vehicle (USV) Capability technology developed using funding via Dstl. Using the funding ASV Global was able to demonstrate advanced autonomous navigation at the Royal Navy’s Unmanned Warrior exercise in October 2016 and more recently in the Solent. This technology is being integrated with the Innovate U.K. project developments.