Estonia Embarks on €95 Million EUROGUARD Project for Semi-Autonomous Naval Vessel

The EUROGUARD project, backed by the European Defence Fund (EDF), has officially begun in Estonia. Led by Baltic Workboats, the consortium involves 23 enterprises from 10 EU Member States, aiming to develop a modular and semi-autonomous surface vessel platform with a remote control system. The project, with a total budget of EUR 95 million, receives EUR 65 million from the EDF and EUR 30 million from participating countries and companies.

Baltic Workboats, leading the consortium, expressed the significance of participating and leading in such a project, emphasizing the opportunity to showcase cutting-edge technology and shipbuilding competence. The prototype, set for completion and testing by the end of 2027, will undergo sea trials in Estonian waters in collaboration with the Estonian Navy.

The prototype’s capabilities, determined through multi-year research and development, include autonomous navigation, obstacle and threat detection, collision avoidance, and mission-specific tasks. Adhering to the modularity principle, the vessel can be assembled according to specific needs or tasks, with a focus on innovation in the propulsion system for environmental sustainability.

Francisco Casalduero, the Defence Development Programme project manager at the European Commission’s Directorate General for Defence Industry and Space, highlighted the project’s goal to enhance cooperation among European defence industries. The EUROGUARD project is expected to elevate European sea defense capabilities through a next-generation, adaptable design suitable for various missions.

The collaborative effort includes participation from Belgium, Denmark, France, Italy, Norway, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, and Sweden. Baltic Workboats, based in Nasva on one of Estonia’s Baltic Sea islands, specializes in building various vessels for military and civilian clients. Industry participants also include Damen, Fincantieri, Kongsberg Maritime, Leonardo, Naval Group, Thales, Safran Electronics and Defense, Navantia, Ośrodek Badawczo-Rozwojowy Centrum Techniki Morskiej, SH Defence, and SSPA Maritime Center, according to the European Commission.

The European Defence Fund plays a crucial role in strengthening the European defence industry and fostering research and development. It supports innovative projects and aims to create unified defence capabilities across Europe.

Check out the latest news in our Global News section

Stay updated on environmental data and insights by following KI Data on Twitter