Norway’s fjords welcome another pair of autonomous vessels

Another pioneering Norwegian pair of vessels have hit the waters, advancing shipping’s path to autonomous operations.

ASKO, a grocery distributor, has christened a pair of vessels which are electrically powered and can operate autonomously, following in the wake of the Yara Birkeland, a landmark ship that has been operating since the start of the year.

Built at state-owned Cochin Shipyard in India, ASKO Maritime’s new vessels, called Marit and Therese, will mainly carry groceries for NorgesGruppen’s chains along Norway’s fjords. Initially, the ships will sail with a limited crew of around four people, including captains. After an extensive trial period of two years, the plan is to let them sail completely without people onboard.

Fully electric trucks will take the cargo between the warehouses and the ports of Moss and Horten, and in shipments of 16 the trailers will be transported across a fjord on the new battery-driven vessels.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
Back to top button