CIMC Raffles, the offshore yard of China International Marine Containers (CIMC), has signed a framework agreement with Shanghai-based GIS Venture Partners for the research, development and construction of unmanned ships and related systems.
The two companies will jointly establish an R&D team for unmanned ships and subsea robots which could be used in offshore oil & gas and wind fields.
GIS Venture Partners is an investment firm with major interests in artificial intelligence, biological science and advanced materials.
China is currently making efforts to develop autonomous ships. One of the two biggest Chinese shipbuilding groups, CSSC, is currently working with its shipyards and ship technology units including CSSC Systems Engineering Research Institute, SDARI, Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding, Hudong Heavy Machinery and Huangpu Wenchong Shipbuilding, to develop its first generation ‘intelligent ship’. The first project is designed to work on a 200,000dwt ocean-going ship.