Second Autonomous Survey Vessel for Van Oord – Heavy Lift News
10 May 2021

Second Autonomous Survey Vessel for Van Oord

Van Oord is always on the lookout for innovative digital solutions that create value for their clients and take marine engineering to the next level. After a successful deployment of its first unmanned (autonomous) survey vessel last year, Van Oord ordered a second vessel.

Van Oord augments knowledge and experience with data-driven information and insights. This approach has generated several ideas from in-house departments for digital client solutions that have been piloted and/or scaled up, e.g. the VO:X Metiri, Van Oord’s first unmanned (autonomous) survey vessel. After a successful deployment of the vessel at projects in the Netherlands last year, Van Oord recently contracted Demcon Unmanned Systems for a second unmanned vessel.

The idea for the VO:X Metiri originated in Van Oord’s Survey department. The objective was to obtain more measuring data for the client at lower cost and to increase safety by eliminating an onboard operator and surveyor. Thanks to its small dimensions, VO:X Metiri can operate in places that a normal survey vessel cannot access. The vessel was developed by the Van Oord Survey team in collaboration with high-end technology supplier Demcon.

Fedor Ester, Managing Director of Demcon Unmanned Systems: ‘The key to our success lays in combining Van Oord’s experience and expertise in survey with our knowledge of autonomous technologies and unmanned system development. From design and engineering to the execution phase, the entire vessel was developed in-house and in close cooperation with Van Oord’s engineers.’

Frank Reynhout, Surveyor: ‘VO:X Metiri gives us a great deal of flexibility thanks to its small dimensions and is put to use multiple times a week. This helps us provide project crews and clients with relevant measuring data in an efficient way. We are now mainly using it in inland water, but are researching deployment in near-shore operations for the second vessel. This way, we will be able to support vessel crews as well.’

Latest in sustainable solutions


In 2020, VO:X Metiri surveyed two areas, in the River Rotte and in the basin in the Spaanse polder for the A16 motorway project in Rotterdam. The electrical vessel features the very latest in sustainable solutions, including zero emissions and low-noise engines, allowing the vessel to collect data without disturbing local fauna.


Source Van Oord




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