Competition launched for design of first additively manufactured rescue boat

September 30, 2019

Lloyd’s Register has partnered with Singapore’s National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Cluster (NAMIC), Autodesk, ST Engineering’s Electronics sector and AML3D to launch the Global Maritime AM Challenge, offering a first prize of S$30,000 (approx. £17,500) to the winner of the best innovative design idea for an additively manufactured rescue boat hull; the result will be the first rescue boat delivered by AM.

This initiative follows a recent project funded by Lloyd’s Register Foundation (LRF), the charitable parent company of Lloyd’s Register Group, in which a digitally enabled steel pedestrian bridge was successfully additively manufactured in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Following the publication of its Guidance Notes on how to certify metallic parts produced by laser-based AM in partnership with The Welding Institute (TWI), Lloyd’s Register’s Additive Manufacturing team reportedly works with customers globally, and has recently qualified AM facilities in Asia-Pacific with 3D Metalforge and AML3D, as well as Shell’s Technology Centre in Amsterdam.

Launched by NAMIC, this competition is the first part of a three-phase project to build and qualify an AM rescue boat hull with autonomous sensors, supported by Singapore’s National Research Foundation (NRF) and the Maritime Port Authority of Singapore (MPA). Under the competition guidelines, vessels entered can be constructed using either Wire Arc Additive Manufacturing (WAAM) or Composite Continuous Fibre Manufacturing.

Rescue boats should be between 3.8–8.5 m in length. For those entries produced by WAAM, aluminium must be the deposition metal, with a thickness limitation for a non-machined finish of 5 mm thick, within a tolerance of 0.1 mm. There are no limitations on curvature, but there is a limitation on the build direction of 45° either side of vertical. The aluminium used must be aluminium 5183 – 0.2% scandium, aluminium 5183 or aluminium 5356. 

“This is a great competition for any shipbuilder, shipyard, manufacturing company or design business interested in submitting their designs with the possibility of winning a significant amount of money to develop their idea using Additive Manufacturing techniques,” stated Hussain Quraishi, Innovation Lead at Lloyd’s Register’s Digital Innovation Hub in Singapore. “We’re particularly looking for entries which embrace the freedom that Additive Manufacturing allows to develop new novel hull designs.”

The winning design will be part of a research exercise with Nanyang Technological University (NTU) Singapore, embedding sensors and integrating autonomous navigation systems provided by ST Engineering’s Electronics sector. This incubation and design appraisal phase is expected to last around a year, after which it will be manufactured by AML3D and qualified by Lloyd’s Register.

While the winner of the first prize will be awarded S$30,000, second and third prizes of S$20,000 and S$10,000 are also available to win. Further competition guidelines are available via the NAMIC website. Submissions will close on March 31 2020. 

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