Danish companies Systematic A/S and Odense Maritime Technology (OMT) have formed CUBEDIN A/S, a joint venture aimed at creating integration solutions that support adaption of a vessel to a specific mission.
The companies believe that in future, it will be possible to reconfigure ships in a matter of hours, and thus transform an inspection ship into a patrol vessel, or a mine-sweeper into an environmental protection craft.
Systematic’s specializes in software development while OMT specializes in ship design. Together, the two companies have created a software and integration concept that supports a brand-new type of modular, flexible naval vessel. The ships are designed and built to accommodate different modules. These can accommodate different loads and can be quickly loaded/unloaded depending on the ship’s forthcoming missions. The modules can come from a wide range of suppliers, as long as they fit within the standard dimensions. CUBEDIN delivers the software and integration solutions that make the modules work as if they had always been part of the ship.
Danny Ingemann, CEO at CUBEDIN A/S, believes that the future is modular, and that the modular designs point the way to tomorrow’s naval ships as well as vessels operated by the public authorities.
“Ships that are currently in service are not designed with flexibility in mind. They are usually created for a specific purpose and for a particular type of task. Using the CUBEDIN integration technology, shipbuilders can deliver modular vessels which, in the space of a few hours, can be adapted for different missions simply by replacing the modules. This is not just practical and flexible – it’s also far cheaper, because mission-specific ships are expensive to procure and maintain,” he said.
The content for the modules can be supplied by many different companies, and the new joint venture has caught the attention of the maritime industry. At the world naval defense exhibition Euronaval in Paris in October 2022, CUBEDIN A/S signed a partnership agreement with Thales which, like several other companies around the world, has expressed an interest to package its technology in modules and have them integrated seamlessly with a ship platform.
“The aim of the integration technology is to deliver a module store that controls what modules a specific ship can use,” said Danny Ingemann.
As part of the new joint venture, OMT has developed the interface panels that the modules connect to, while Systematic is responsible for developing and supplying the software which enables the modules to communicate with the ship’s other systems.
According to Danny Ingemann, the CUBEDIN concept holds enormous potential on the global market, as it allows individual countries to decide which functionalities their vessel should have.
“It’s a ground-breaking concept, because it’s based on open ship design and communication standards, and modules that are compatible with dimensions of an ISO standard container. It’s an approach that gives access to a large global market which needs this type of ship. We’re not in any doubt that this way of building naval vessels is the future,” he said.
Danny Ingemann expects the first ships with CUBEDIN’s integration technology to set sail within a couple of years.