By Andy Choi
Norway’s Minister of Trade and Industry inaugurated the new applied underwater robotics (AUR) laboratory on the 23 August at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU).
Trond Giske, Norwegian Minister of Trade and Industry, remotely clips an underwater ribbon to inaugurate the new Applied Underwater Robotics Lab
The minister inaugurated the lab by cutting a ribbon placed underwater with the help of Minerva, the university’s remote underwater minisub. The lab will be catering to the increasing demand for environmental monitoring of oceans, offshore oil and gas industry and marine research. Experts from the field of cybernetics, marine biology, marine archaeology, control engineering, underwater technology and telecommunications will be coming together for conducting research at the lab.
Kari Melby the Pro-rector for Research at NTNU stated that efforts are directed towards strengthening the university’s position in creating links between science and technology and to develop unique approaches. Melby was confident that by consolidating the expertise at NTNU in various sectors of marine technology significant breakthroughs can be achieved at the AUR lab. The Trade and Industry minister regarded the AUR lab as a means for Norway to strengthen its position as an expert in the subsea level and create job opportunities thereby leveraging the country’s economy. Ivar O. Grytdal, the director of Statoil’s Subsea north division was also present at the inauguration ceremony. According to Melby, the research conducted at the lab will prove useful in meeting the challenges presented by the ocean and come out with innovative environmental solutions. Melby pointed out that the research at the AUR lab will play an instrumental role in the management efforts by Norway in the High and North Arctic.
By establishing the lab, the University moves a step closer towards strengthening its ocean research program and in building the Ocean Space Centre. The Ocean Space Centre will be established at the Trondheim waterfront for researchers to study a host of marine and maritime topics.