On September 3th the Dutch navy hosted a seminar on aquatic drones on board of the Zr.Ms. Johan de Witt. The session was organized by Innovation Quarter, Maritime Delta, RDM Campus and RMSC.
The development and operation of aquatic drones is a major development with huge implications for the maritime industry. Also in terms of risk management, responsibility and legislation this is an interesting development.
At the moment aquatic drones are already used, for example by the navy and by companies involved the offshore industry. Possible applications for aquatic drones are amongst others: exploration of coastal areas, patrol, inspection of cay walls and measuring of all kinds. Several projects for further development of aquatic drones and their applications are taking place at the RDM Campus, in which many actors are involved. These include the established companies in the Dutch maritime industry as well as innovative start-up companies and enthusiastic hobbyists. All together the Rotterdam region has the actors, the knowledge and the facilities to be a frontrunner in this major development.
One of the issues addressed in the seminar is the definition of ‘’remote controlled’’ and ‘’autonomous’’ and the different ‘’levels of assistance (LOA)’’ between these concepts. This is an important subject as the definitions form an important building block for operation and safety standards and risk management.
During the seminar it became clear that there is a strong community dedicated to this development. RMSC will stay connected with this community to stimulate the involvement of financial, legal and insurance services, as these are important for the operation of the new technologies. Early involvement of these services in the development process can accelerate the process of application, as new legislation or new risk and insurance products are often necessary to make operations legal, feasible, acceptable or manageable.