UKHO launches new innovation programme to support development of the Blue Economy

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The second innovation challenge is to identify, trial and prove how navigational data can be used to enhance maritime insurance products.

LONDON, England – The UK Hydrographic Office has launched a new ADMIRALTY Marine Innovation Programme, spearheaded by the UKHO’s Research, Design and Innovation team and RE_SET, the programme will give innovators and start-ups a chance to develop new solutions that solve some of the world’s most pressing challenges when it comes to our oceans.

The launch of this programme follows extensive research commissioned by the UK Hydrographic Office into the Blue Economy, which is estimated to be worth £3.2 trillion by the year 2030. Marine geospatial data will play an essential role in supporting this growth by enabling the identification of new areas for tidal and wind energy generation, supporting safe navigation for larger autonomous ships, playing a vital role in mitigating the effects of climate change, and more.

Successful innovation programme participants will develop their own solutions for these areas, using ADMIRALTY data sets that range from seabed composition samples and bathymetric profiles of the seafloor, to tidal and navigational information. Entrants to some challenges will also work alongside leading experts in research, design and development at the UKHO, with winners receiving an opportunity to launch their products into some of the world’s fastest-growing marine sectors.

New challenge details – Transforming Maritime Risk and Insurance

Following on from the successful completion of the Unlocking Autonomous Navigation challenge, the UK Hydrographic Office is inviting innovators and start-ups to develop new solutions for the maritime risk and insurance sector using ADMIRALTY data.

As part of this innovation challenge, participants will have access to ADMIRALTY data that can provide valuable insight into risk and asset management not yet available over a large geographic area and historic period. These participants will be asked to identify, trial and prove how this data can be used to help build more accurate risk models that can lead to even better underwriting decisions and improved maritime insurance products.

All submissions for this challenge will be reviewed by a panel of experts, with the winners receiving 12 weeks of hands-on support and ADMIRALTY data worth around £75,000 to develop a product for a market estimated to be worth £18.5 billion by 2030.

To take part, participants will need to register on the ADMIRALTY website and submit their solutions by the 20th of November.

Find out more about this challenge here

Subsequent challenges will invite innovators to develop solutions for areas including tidal and wave energy generation, blue carbon sequestration and sea-level rise modelling. Dates for these challenges will be confirmed throughout 2020 and 2021.

Commenting on the launch of the ADMIRALTY Marine Innovation Programme, Mark Casey, Head of Research, Design and Innovation at the UK Hydrographic Office said:

“The launch of our Marine Innovation Programme is an exciting milestone in our journey to help many marine sectors solve some of the core issues that we face. We believe that our challenges will support innovation across the Blue Economy and encourage digital leaders to use marine geospatial data in new and varied ways. We would encourage anyone with the skills or a big idea in these areas to get in touch, get involved, and help unlock the power of marine geospatial data.”

You can find out more about the programme on the ADMIRALTY website:

Blue economy research

The launch of the ADMIRALTY Marine Innovation Programme follows extensive research commissioned by the UK Hydrographic Office into the Blue Economy. Our global Blue Economy, referring to all ocean-related activities, is experiencing a series of transformations under the combined influence of rising populations, increasing incomes, scarcer natural resources, a changing climate and rapidly evolving technologies.

A ‘new’ Blue Economy is developing as established economic sectors are being disrupted and new economic sectors emerge, paving the way to a smart, sustainable and resilient use of ocean ecosystems.

This includes the Maritime Insurance sector which is estimated be worth £18.5 billion by 2030.

You can find out more about this sector in the UKHO’s latest report on the Maritime Insurance sector.

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