The RAPID project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement N°861211. RAPID will save lives by delivering an early warning system that will detect critical deterioration in transport system infrastructure, while also minimising system disruption and delays to critical supply chains. It will achieve this goal by combining and extending state-of-the-art drone technology to deliver a fully automated and safety assured maintenance-inspection (MI) service for bridge inspection, ship hull surveys and more. By combining self-sailing unmanned surface vehicles (USV) with swarms of autonomous unmanned aerial systems (UAS), RAPID will dramatically cut the time and cost of structural condition monitoring.
RAPID-enabled MI services will increase efficiency and competitiveness for maritime transport stakeholders – such as ports, shipping companies, and landside transport authorities – and will deliver the safe and seamless operation of supply chain and mobility infrastructures – such as material handling equipment, cargo and passenger ships, and bridges. It encourages prioritisation of safer transport infrastructure where the technology seeks to improve environmental impact. The attractive return on investment will enable RAPID to gain market traction and incentivise commercial proliferation, bringing RAPID into widespread use for the overall benefit of society.
By 2028, a newly formed company will generate €124 million and save in the order of 100 lives per year (reaching 20% share of the serviceable addressable maritime transport market through a strategic partnership with 50 ports). RAPID brings together interdisciplinary partners with the expertise and capacity required to develop and validate this unique service model. The project will develop the consolidated maritime and aviation regulation standard for safe USV / UAS operations and the business model to scale the pilot service. RAPID will validate the high level of digitalisation, automation, and regulation required to support safe, beneficial, and scalable access to U-Space.
Discover our Partners
The composition of the RAPID consortium facilitates collaboration and knowledge transfer between a confluence of interdisciplinary epistemic leaders in infrastructure survey, unmanned robotics, maritime transport logistics, legal research, communications, and service commercialisation. It provides a strong sense of context for the project challenge and ensures that the built solution will have a competitive advantage. The innovative strategy integrates the solution into Hamburg City Port (Europe’s 3rd largest container port) to maximise and expedite impact.
Dr. James Riordan
University of the West of Scotland