KOCHI: Entering the league of premier shipbuilding yards, Cochin Shipyard Ltd(CSL) on Saturday held the keel-laying ceremony of two autonomous zero emission electric vessels for Norwegian firm ASKO Maritime AS. Industries Minister P Rajeeve was the chief guest. The vessels are considered to be the first of their kind in the merchant shipping field.“This is not merely a keel- laying ceremony, but an event that will further firm up bilateral ties between India and Norway. I hope, this will enable the Cochin Shipyard to secure more orders for such advanced vessels from other European countries,” said Rajeeve.
Asko Maritime AS managing director Kai Just Oslen, who attended the function through videoconferencing, expressed happiness over the progress of the project.“This is an important project for Cochin Shipyard. Though the vessel is a small one, the impact the vessel could make in the field of autonomous and electric vessel segment is huge.” said CSL managing director Madhu S Nair.
The Cochin Shipyard had signed the contract for construction and supply of two autonomous electric ferries for ASKO Maritime AS on July 15, 2020. The project is partially funded by Oslo( Norwegian government) and aimed at emission-free transport of goods across the Oslofjords(inlet).
These vessels will be managed by Massterly AS, a joint venture between Kongsberg, the world leader in autonomous technology, and Wilhelmsen, one of the largest Maritime shipping companies. Once in operation, these vessels will create a new benchmark for the merchant shipping world, said Madhu S Nair.
The 67 m- long vessels will initially be delivered as a full-electric transport ferry, powered by 1,846 kWh capacity battery.