Two Norwegian companies called YARA and KONGSBERG come in collaboration and designed the world’s first autonomous zero-emissions ship. Scientists named it as YARA Birkeland named for company founder Kristian Birkeland.

The company said that this autonomous zero-emissions ship will cut the same emissions of roughly 40,000 trucks per year. This autonomous 100 percent electric vehicle will be the world’s most advanced container feeder watercraft. Ultimately, it will reduce NOx and CO2 emissions and improve road safety by removing up to 40,000 truck journeys in populated urban areas.

World’s First Fully Autonomous Zero-Emissions Ship
Image credit: Kongsberg

Svein Tore Holsether, President, and CEO of YARA said, “As a leading global fertilizer company with a mission to feed the world and protect the planet, investing in this zero emission vessel to transport our crop nutrition solutions fits our strategy well. We are proud to work with KONGSBERG to realize the world’s first autonomous, all-electric vessel to enter commercial operation.”

“Every day, more than 100 diesel truck journeys are needed to transport products from YARA’s Porsgrunn plant to ports in Brevik and Larvik where we ship products to customers around the world. With this new autonomous battery-driven container vessel we move transport from road to sea and thereby reduce noise and dust emissions, improve the safety of local roads, and reduce NOx and CO2 emissions.”

World’s First Fully Autonomous Zero-Emissions Ship
Image credit: Kongsberg

The KONGSBERG have provided all key enabling technologies including the sensors, electric drive, battery, propulsion control systems and integration required for remote and autonomous operations.

Geir Håøy, President, and CEO of KONGSBERG said, “By moving container transport from land to sea, YARA Birkeland is the start of a major contribution to fulfilling national and international environmental impact goals. The new concept is also a giant step forward towards increased seaborne transportation in general.”

“Developing systems for autonomous operations is a major opening and natural step for KONGSBERG, considering our decades of expertise in the development and integration of advanced sensors, control and communication systems for all areas of ship operations. YARA Birkeland will set the benchmark for the application of innovative maritime technology for more efficient and environmentally friendly shipping.”