The ribbon was cut on the The Digital, Autonomous and Robotics Engineering (DARE) Centre by MP Graham Stuart, Minister for Energy Security and Net Zero earlier today.
The state-of-the-art DARE Centre, run by ORE Catapult, is the first of its kind in the UK and will provide a unique opportunity for developers, researchers and wider industry to test, demonstrate and commercialise innovative digital and robotic products and services for the offshore renewable energy market.
As offshore wind in the UK gets ready to triple capacity over the next decade, the adoption of robotics and autonomous systems is vital to achieving this rapid expansion and reaching net zero.
These technologies play an increasingly important role in the offshore renewable energy sector, and the UK is primed to establish a world-leading supply chain linked to their future development.
Mr said: “I’m delighted to open the UK’s national robotics centre for offshore wind. Drones, robots and underwater vehicles can reinforce the UK’s position as the world leader in offshore wind, make us even more competitive, and keep turbines turning in even the most hazardous of conditions.
“The robotics centre will increase the safety and productivity of our highly skilled offshore wind technicians, lower costs, and contribute both to lower consumer bills and the nation’s energy security.”
Technology tested at the DARE Centre will support the expansion of the offshore wind market and turbocharge the success of services and digital infrastructure surrounding the industry.
Andrew Jamieson, chief executive at ORE Catapult, said: “The DARE Centre is a fantastic facility that will help the UK stay at the forefront of innovation in robotics, AI and digital solutions to support the growth of offshore renewables.
“The UK has a global reputation for its sub-ocean engineering expertise and ingenuity and the DARE Centre will propel UK businesses and this capability into the fast-expanding offshore wind space.
“Innovation we can unlock here will allow those at the cutting edge of offshore wind development to work faster and safer, optimise specialist skills, improve reliability, and reduce the carbon footprint of the next generation of offshore wind farms.”