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Emphasis on smaller and mediums sized European shipyards and ship builders, to increase competitiveness and growth of the European sector, particularly within international markets: Many European smaller and medium sized shipyards and shipbuilders are currently not able to manufacture and maintain high-tech large ships due to the lack of adequate resources and capabilities including suitably sized dry docks. RESURGAM will create global market opportunities for these European SMEs by delivering technologies (AI-enabled robotic FSW/UFSW system and digital connectivity & collaboration infrastructure) that will enable them to be at the forefront of modular fabrication/maintenance/retrofitting and in-water/underwater maintenance of high-tech large ships.

Improve environmental performance of shipyards and ship builders:

  • Welding fumes – FSW produces virtually no fume. While it would be difficult to expect fully zero emissions during the trials involved, research has shown that this can be a significant improvement towards the more widespread deployment of FSW. Significantly, based on experience of shipbuilding partners, there have been concerns towards the welding of stainless fittings and pipework for cooling and desalination may become problematic due to releases of hexavalent chromium being released, something that would not occur with FSW. On that account, trials will be undertaken on an accurate measurement of actual emissions carried out during the use of the RESURGAM prototype.
  • Welding flux - With submerged arc welding (SAW), the used flux is now treated as contaminated waste and, thus, incurs significant costs in handling and disposing. Through FSW, there is no flux involved, meaning a reduction of the costs involved with its extractions, alongside the improved environmental impact.
  • Energy efficiency - FSW is often a more energy efficient process than arc welding. Further to discussions at the outset of the project, the consortium intends to endeavour in establishing a baseline on the power consumption per metre of weld and what relations can be established in terms of CO2 emissions saved at the generating source. In addition, the lower distortion arising from FSW will also be a contributing factor.

Support a multiplication effect within Europe beyond the immediate participantdevelop innovative modular ship fabrication/maintenance and in-water/underwater maintenance technologies and approaches (robotic FSW/UFSW and digital connectivity & collaboration infrastructure) that can be adopted by the European shipbuilding and maintenance supply/value chain to enhance the competitiveness of the whole supply/value chain

Economic Impact of RESURGAM (beyond the consortium) Modular fabrication could deliver up to 15% cost savings and reduce construction time by up to 31%. With Europe having ~6% stake21 in the global shipbuilding market (which currently equates to 11.92 Bn€ of the 198.59Bn€ combined global market for shipbuilding and ship repair/maintenance – section 2.2a.1), a 15% cost savings could translate into 893.66M€ annual savings in production/maintenance costs (assuming production cost is 50% of turnover).

Gains in the modular construction of new ships:

  • Reduced build time leading to reduced overhead cost
  • Given that additional efficiency is gained if/when modules are standardized, this translates ultimately into reduced cost
  • The use of smaller and medium sized ship yards in the built process leads to smaller overheads and reduced cost
  • More opportunities for smaller and medium sized ship yards means a larger supplier base which leads to improved quality and hence reduced costs.

Gains in modular ship maintenance:

  • Ease of removing and either replacing or repairing damaged onboard components saves time and reduces cost
  • Given that with modular outfitting some components are likely to become standardized, these will become cheaper to repair or replace
  • Standardization will lead to swap-out/swap-in scenarios of selected modules during repair and maintenance routines which ultimately leads to faster turn-around times.
  • Due to overall reduced down time in yards for maintenance and repair, fleet operation time is increased.

Gains in the modular construction of new ships:

  • The time saved in reduced down time in yards for maintenance and repairs means increased operational time

Economic benefits of in-water/underwater maintenance to wider European ship maintenance sector:

  • RESURGAM robotic UFSW system and supporting digital infrastructure will allow EU ship maintenance companies to rapidly plan and execute ship maintenance jobs anywhere in the world without the need for a dry dock. The resulting reduced maintenance costs (due to limited/no use of dry docks) and reduced maintenance downtime (due to automated inspection and repair) will benefit the ship operators including European ship operators.

Maximise EU added value by appropriate means of minimising knowledge and technology leakage

Adequate foreground IPR protection measures (e.g. patents, design rights, software copyright, confidentiality agreements for knowhow/trade secrets) will be developed

Cross-cutting Priorities - Blue Growth:

  • RESURGAM consortium will collaborate with other H2020 projects funded under the Blue Growth topics, in a bit to identify areas where synergies can be created, without compromising IPR and the potential of exploiting the outputs of RESURGAM.