The National Oceanography Centre

The National Oceanography Centre’s Marine Robotics Innovation Centre (MARSIC), based at its Southampton site, provided additional resource and capability for working collaboratively with innovative companies which are developing technology for marine autonomous systems.

Funding through the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) from the Science Minister's 'Eight Great Technologies' initiative, this exciting development cements NOC’s position as a UK leader in marine autonomous systems. The centre encourages early stage developments and enables the growth of a cluster of marine autonomous systems companies able to answer international challenges.

Specifically the centre aims to encourage and support:
• development of technologies and systems that create a step change in marine autonomous systems capability
• an exchange of ideas and information to facilitate wider adoption of marine autonomous systems
• collaborative projects that respond to national and international challenges more effectively
• leveraging of supporting public funding for specific Research and Development
• development and demonstration of new technology via access to research facilities and equipment at the National Oceanography Centre.

The centre also provided information about regulation and legislation, risk and reliability, communication, and control relating to marine autonomous systems.

Innovation Centre partners worked on novel projects, not currently market ready, with the long-term aim of the advancement of the national capability in marine autonomous systems technology. Non-ME’s will also be welcomed to the Innovation Centre, however the centre was not used for manufacturing.

Co-located with the Innovation Centre was the University of Southampton’s new Systems Reliability Laboratory with state-of-the-art facilities, also funded from the ‘Eight Great Technologies’ initiative, by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council. Organisations interested in the MARS Innovation Centre should email innovationcentre@noc.ac.uk

The stand highlighted NOC’s Science and Technology developments and showcased how they have been working with industry in all sectors.

The Marine Robotics Innovation Centre generated ground-breaking developments within the Autonomous field and enables the UK MARS fleet to have a state of the art facility as its base of operations in Southampton.

NOC offered specialist skills and knowledge to support industry in research and development projects, and gain access to funding and facilities that will underpin development of innovative products and services.

Other exhibits included NOC’s national capabilities through its management of the NERC research vessels RRS Discovery and RRS James Cook, tidal and coastal measuring, deep ocean exploration and ground breaking modelling facilities.

Their exhibits were relevant to those attending the following conference streams: Green Shipping; Handling Big Data; Hydrography, Geophysics and Geotechnics; Marine Renewables; Monitoring Structural Integrity: Understanding Risk and Reliability; Ocean Observing Systems: Marine Technology and Services Sector Role in the Blue Economy; Oil & Gas: What’s next for Ageing Offshore Assets?; Positioning & Metrology; and Unmanned Vehicles and Vessels Showcase. www.noc.ac.uk 

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