R&D for Optimizing Gangway Operability


A R & D project sponsored by Norwegian Government’s innovation is exploring the possibility of optimizing gangway operability to provide safe access to vessels and avoid potential injuries.


Kongsberg Maritime is jointly working with Norwegian shipping company Ostensjo and the Norwegian Marine Technology Research Institute (Marintek) on a new R&D project to provide safe access to vessels and avoid potential injuries. This project is mainly focusing on operations using motion compensated and telescopic gangways. This kind of arrangement is found on accommodation vessels in the offshore sector. This project is a part of the Norwegian Government’s innovation programme MAROFF (Maritime Activities and Offshore Operations).

During a vessel’s port stay accommodation ladder, or a gangway, is the normal means of access to the vessel. But, accessing any fixed or floating offshore structure becomes quite challenging, even with the help of accommodation ladders. This challenge gets magnified by other external factors like cargo operations, tidal conditions, swell and other gangway users. Although gangways eliminate the need of using ladders, it is important to be careful with the distance between vessel and structure. There is a need to ensure that the distance is within the operational limit of the telescope on the gangway. The positioning equipment provides the vessel and structure remain within operational limits. Still, crew training is essential to reduce risk whenever there are gangway connection and disconnection operation to avoid any personal injury and structural damage.


The new project would be utilising Kongsberg Maritime’s Dynamic Positioning (DP) controller for operation of Østensjo’s new generation accommodation vessel, Edda Fortis. The salient features of the project are as below:

  1. Collection and analysis of the operational data.
  2. Offering simulation studies using the SIMO simulation tool package and Kongsberg Maritime’s DP algorithms.
  3. Availability of a tailor-made simulation software system for crew training on critical operations.
  4. Incidents and planned operations preparation will be developed by Kongsberg Maritime.
  5. Sensor data will be interfaced to Kongsberg’s DP system to simulate the compensation of the motion between the rig and the accommodation vessel.
  6. Analyzed data can be used as an input for adjusting the DP control strategy on board to extend the operational window defined for gangway operation.


Terje Heierstad, Global Product Manager, Kongsberg Maritime Simulation are pleased to be a part of advanced R&D project. He believed that full-scale data from the accommodation vessel could be used to improve, update and tune the simulator models to an extreme level of accuracy. This becomes very significant component when the crew is trained for operations with high safety requirements and small risk margins.

Source and Image Credit: Kongsberg