An offshore wind farm entails many maintenance costs. The partners within the SMARAGD project are developing an autonomous vessel to transport goods to and from the wind turbines. The aim is to reduce unnecessary costs.
Apr 2021 - Mar 2023
DBC project, National project

Maintenance personnel is sent to offshore installations nearly every day to carry out the necessary maintenance works. Parts or tools are regularly missing, which may lead to certain works not being carried out or being postponed. That, in turn, leads to a great deal of lost time and unnecessary costs.

The SMARAGD project (“SMart Autonomous Reliable Aquatic Goods Drone”) aims to develop an unmanned vessel that can autonomously transfer parts or tools to offshore locations. This will allow technicians to be deployed more efficiently and the number of trips to be reduced.

The partners will design a specific hull integrating the requested functionalities (unmanned operation, container transport and automated cargo handling (LARS)), as well as the relevant systems (power and propulsion, intelligent Guidance, Navigation & Control (GNC) and the LARS).

Successful implementation of the project will essentially result in the (onshore) warehouse being closer to the offshore workplace. After translating the concept into a working system, the aim is to reach a fleet of 20 such vessels in 10 years’ time.

Partners: GEOxyz,, e-Bo Enterprises and ERPA Industrial Supplier.

With the support of: VLAIO (Flanders Innovation & Entrepreneurship).

Contact: Stefaan Mensaert

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